Thursday, September 06, 2007

Fouled-Off Bunts: Making Up For Lost Time Edition

Lots of little things lately that I've either ignored, missed or left to the little box on the right...

  • Redding hurt his elbow on a diving catch, where he flopped to the ground ala Joey Eischen a few years ago. It's a "right lateral elbow contusion" (read: bruise) and he'll be out 7 to 10 days. Bacsik fills in, which seems like a waste.

  • The Nats traded Ray King to the Brewers for a PTBNL (read: junk). What's notable about that is that that is the ONLY player the Nationals brought into the farm system this year because of trades (obviously this doesn't include Wily E). If, back in April, you had said that they'd only trade Ray King this year and get back just one low-level PTBNL, would you have been disappointed? Are you disappointed now?

  • Call-ups galore!

    The Nats brought up two of their top prospects: Ross Detwiler (who had a good bullpen session) and the only man on the roster who knows how to properly castrate a goat, Justin Maxwell. I'd love to see both get some chances to play, but they'll be rare, especially because the Nats are going to 1) want to finish strong and 2) play their 'best' team against the opponents who are still in pennant races. If you assume that the Braves are still in it, only 3 more games come against non-contenders.

    As far as options/service time and all that...

    Neither promotion is worth worrying about. The Nats had plenty of room on the 40-man rosters, so adding them now isn't going to hurt anything. And with the lack of upper-level prospects, there's really no worry about adding these guys sooner than they'd otherwise need to be added to avoid the Rule 5 draft; they're taking the spots of non-prospects who'd otherwise not be selected or aren't worth worrying about losing anyway.

    As far as service time, it's a month. That's not going to matter one bit in terms of how soon they'll be arbitration eligible (barring unusual circumstances). One month is definitely not enough to trigger Super-2 status and unless they bounce up and down in a funky way, it's not going to trigger arbitration any earlier.

    With respect to options, it's also a non-factor, especially for Detwiler. You only use an option if you're sent down, so since they've spent this entire year in the majors after being added to the 40-man, no option is used this year. If they both play the entire season next year in the minors (a safe assumption), then they'll have four seasons of options, and since they both played college (and Maxwell has had a few years of development in the minors already), if they're not ready in 4 years, they're not prospects anyway. So no harm, no foul.

  • They called up a few more guys... Langerhans is back. So is Bowie. But they're also giving a look at (hold on, let me copy and paste this) Jonathan Albaladejo (quick, think up a nickname for him. JAlba?) and Arnie Munoz, who I'll likely call Artie a few times out of habit. Munoz and J.Alba pitched relief and will likely be given a longer look than Detwiler. Munoz is likely to take Ray King's role as LOOGY, which would save the Nats $1-2 million next year (at least), if he can handle it.

  • Previously, they had brought Matt Chico back up, and recalled Winnie Abreu, who dominated at AAA, even though he showed no ability to get NL batters out earlier this year. Thanks to NFA for pointing out that Chico's time in the minors was short enough so as to not officially use one of his option years. He still has three left, which will likely come in handy next year!

  • Nick Johnson is on the Dmitri Young meal plan.

  • Don't expect any pitching help in the off season. (Why does my gut say that the pitching is going to be realllly exposed in the new park next year, despite Brian Schneider's Messiah-like game-calling ability?)

  • Felipe Lopez has an attitude problem, or so some team officials say? I hate ascribing motive to body language, because that's what results in deification of players like David Eckstein, and that's what this team has done on more than one occasion. (remember Church?) Is this that case or is there more to it? He certainly plays like his head is up his ass sometimes, but is that attitude or just bad instincts? (Buck says that that's the latter)


    --NFA gives brief capsules of all the callups and notes who's playing in the Instructional League.

    --OMG wants us to stop using May 9, the low water mark of the season, to evaluate the team's progress. He makes a good point.

    -JANF had the chance to trail along with the TV and radio broadcasts, getting to see how they do their job. Parts 1, 2 and 3.

    --NTP takes an early look at the rotation, and possibilities for the infield next year.

    --No matter what Austin Kearns does, it won't be enough for the Beltway Boys.

    --Nats 320 (eventually) says that the FLORIDA MARLINS are a team of INDIVIDUALS unlike Our Washington Nationals and the details of the lame Season Ticket Holder Days the team is about to hold.


    • Loverro notes that "The Nationals' Matt Chico...until this year never pitched above Class AA."

      Am I the only one who is tired of hearing this noted for players, especially considering how many players move directly from Double A to the majors without stopping in Triple A?

      By Blogger JJ, at 9/06/2007 11:47 AM  

    • J Alba looked great from the upper deck last night. Lots of location, and speeds from the mid 70's to low 90's. He also has panache on the mound and moved the game along nicely.

      Abreu seemed to be reviving his Tony Armas Jr. game delay act again last night. I could have gotten up and brought back beers for the section between pitches.

      As for next year, I still wonder if we might not see the return of Livo so as to eat up some innings and to help Dimitri feel less self-conscious about his weight.

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9/06/2007 2:24 PM  

    • I think you got to go the Harry Belafonte route with "Albala-day-o." At least it'd give a reson to play the dang song. Speaking of which, anyone catch Byron singing his name on Nats Xtra last night? The cat is weird.

      And, I'm a cheapskate. Can anyone give me the (free) reader's digest version of the WMP BP article Chris linked to on the right?

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9/06/2007 2:51 PM  

    • The Nickel version:

      WMP aint' all that. He strikes out waaay too much. He's a complimentary outfielder, not a star.

      Nothing that we didn't know.

      But why assume, when you can write 1,500 words and paste pretty pictures and graphs?

      (kinda like this blog)

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 9/06/2007 2:55 PM  

    • Between Abreu and Colombe, I was waiting for the game to accelerate to glacial speed.

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9/06/2007 11:13 PM  

    • Felipe Lopez: You probably have video to prove me wrong, but if it weren't for the stolen bases, Lopez would have the cleanest uniform in the majors. I have yet to see him dive for a ground ball on the outskirts of his range.

      Bad thing? Dunno. But it's like one of those individual pieces of evidence you like to point out as giving an impression of truth. It sure looks like he isn't hustling.

      By Blogger Jim H, at 9/07/2007 12:03 AM  

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