Sunday, February 13, 2005

Print 'Em Out And Read 'Em At Your Leisure

I take a day off and everyone decides to write about the Nats. Here's my usual Sunday roundup.

--Distinguished Senators posts a statistics glossary for the numbers that we kinda casually throw around out here. Wondering what VORP or OPS+ are? There's your source.

--Adub listened to Jim Bowden on ESPN Radio yesterday and gives us the Cliff's Notes version. Short version, lotsa weaknesses in the team, but plenty of upside.

--Ball-Wonk links to the audio file of the GW roundtable on the Nats with Tony Tavares.

--This RICO ain't suave anymore.

--Ryan Church signs a contract; bells ring. Church is the best short-term hitting prospect in the system. He doesn't have the long-term potential of Larry Broadway, partially because he's already 26. Unfortunately for him, he's probably stuck in the OF logjam. The best thing for him (because he's not going to be starting in DC) is to eat lotsa gumbo and alligator down in the bayou.

--I'm shocked! Shocked that there's ticket scalping going on in this area!
"This happens with every team in baseball. It's unfortunately sort of the nature of the beast," Tavares said. "But if we find someone is using our tickets solely as a profit venture, we reserve the right to pull those tickets."

--Today's content-free Angelos developments are brought to you by the Times.

--Bowden has a thing or two to say (amazing, I know) about the contracts everyone signed during the offseason. In response to Kris Benson's insane contract setting the market:
"They don't have to follow. We didn't. Odalis Perez would have come here had we stepped up. If we had paid close to Benson and close to what Eric Milton got, Odalis would have been a National. But we didn't. We walked away. We did a lot of walking away. Just because there's one or two bad signings, we don't have to do it."

--Here's a recap of some of the construction that is or has been done, including bigger dugouts. I guess Guzman needs extra room for his now-overly-large wallet.

--Here's a similar recap on the 49,000 things still left to be done and the very tight schedule they have left.
"There's a litany of issues," Tavares said. "Locking down our budgets for game-day staff, deciding on how many ushers, how many ticket-takers, how many security guards. Who's the cleaning contract? Who's the parking contract? The concession deal? It's tedious kind of things, like getting our tax ID locally."

--Dave Sheinin does an offseason recap (I really need to break out a thesaurus) of all of MLB for the Post.

--The Orlando Sentinel looks at what it's like to have a new team in town--from the perspective of the spring-training site.
Anticipation also has morphed into ticket sales and attention. When pitchers and catchers report Tuesday, Dever expects to deal with a swarm of national media requests.

"We're going to be one of the biggest stories in baseball this spring," he said.

On the first day of spring-training sales last season, the Expos sold 600 tickets for their opening game at Space Coast Stadium. Within the first 15 minutes of sales this season, the Nationals sold 1,500 for their March 2 opener against the Mets, a game that will be televised by ESPN.


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