Sunday, March 23, 2008

So, Did I Miss Anything?

Thanks to the 1,100 people who emailed me to let me know about the Patterson move. I'm impressed by the number of creative ways you came up with to say "Your stupid!11!"

My quick, relatively unfiltered thought process

1) Something must've happened behind the scenes that we don't, won't and can't know about.

2) No matter how shittastic, I'm not sure this team is in a position to be cutting anyone. We're trending that much closer to the Bacsik line!

3) Lerners ARE CHEEEEEP!!!! OK, I always think that... I do wonder, though, how much of this was a financial decision. Cutting him, they're on the hook for just a portion of his salary. Cutting him, they owe him 45-days pay, about 25% of the $850K, so ~$200. Cut him after the season starts, and they'd be on the hook for the full amount. Not sayin' that's the reason. It's just one of the facts in this case.

  • Sweeping through the billion and four posts in my RSS reader....

    I like NTP's take.
    If the team legitimately thinks John Patterson is done as a healthy, effective Major League pitcher, that's one thing. It's a reasonable opinion to hold, particularly given that they have access to information that we as fans are not privy to. But if someone in the front office or the owner's box looked at J-Patt and said, "Why are we about to pay this guy $850,000 for putting up a 7 ERA in Spring Training after what we've put up with the last two years?" that's a problem.

    Here's OMG:
    For John Patterson he was on his last chance and the idea of letting him work back into shape during the course of a full season to find out where he stood wasn’t appealing to the management. They wanted an answer now on Patterson and when the response came back yet again “We need more time” they decided to cut him.

    Nationals Enquirer:
    "The Big Nasty Truth: Ted Lerner reportedly seen this afternoon burying the ~$600K he saved by releasing JP today under home plate at Nationals Park. Kidding, of course."


    • They have to pay the $200K, but also the $400K for the scrub who replaces him instead of playing in AAA. Not much savings in the end.

      By Blogger Positively Half St., at 3/23/2008 7:33 PM  

    • Come on Chris, you are right about a lot of stuff (like the need for a defensive ace at SS) so just take it like a man, and admit you do not know anything about building arm strength and 30 year old pitchers who have no fastball after surgery. You seemed to just be taking the whole Barry dribble hook, line and sinker and got caught. (by the way so did Barry so that tells us something right?

      While your down you might as well eat a bid of pride on the whole Lopez not smiling means nothing mantra, because apparently attitude does have a role in sports.

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/23/2008 7:52 PM  

    • Eh... I'm not sure that what Barry said influenced my thinking.

      I still think it's too early to judge Patterson one way or another. Yes, the team knows more than I do about this, but that's why I think explanation 1 makes the most sense.

      I'm not sure why they'd think that someone's arm strength would never come back, given that he hasn't really thrown in two years. I can understand them not having patience with him, but this isn't a franchise that can afford to be impatient on the pitching side.

      For Patterson, perhaps, it's the best thing. With a new franchise, maybe he'll swallow some pride himself, go to the minors, and work on building his arm strength up. If he does, he'll be useful. If he doesn't, (or can't), he's done.

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 3/23/2008 7:57 PM  

    • The only possible explanation is that he's DONE done. I don't think this is a financial move, cuz like skedeebs said, how much are they really saving?
      We shoulda signed Livan, but we're at the point now where we need to play Detwiler, Clippard, Lannan, Mock, and whoever the fuck else might actually have a future here.....
      I'm just kinda pissed right now because I thought this is where we were supposed to be LAST year( ie....throwing the season to solidify the developmental pool.)

      By Blogger Rob B, at 3/23/2008 8:11 PM  

    • I completely agree on the cheap thing, Chris, but the level of cheap required to cut Patterson early just to save $600,000 would be extreme even for them, I think (or at least pray). If cost is the reason (as opposed to not wanting to spend for results they know will never improve), then we should abandon all hope now.

      In other news:

      Redding's got back! (spasms)

      while FLop may be heading to either the Cubs or Orioles (to be replaced by Angel Berroa in exchange for Zech Zincola). Things are about to get very interesting in Natsland and there definitely seems to be snark-fodder afoot.

      By Blogger Michael Taylor, at 3/23/2008 8:22 PM  

    • I wanted to comment on what Rob said after I realized I missed him. I'm also kinda miffed at the developmental aspect that Bowden mentioned as a consideration. It left me with two thoughts.

      1)Don't you need talent to develop it? From my understanding, Lannan et al. have been tagged as 4th, 5th starter material, yet we're using slots to "develop" them. Maybe the team sees untapped potential, but from where I'm sitting, they must really have thought Patterson was toast.

      2)In response to Rob, I think last year was the "3-Alarm Fire" year, where the pitching was so bad we had to go all New Colossus and hand the ball to baseball's tired, poor, huddled masses because our system was so bad we couldn't even fill 5 slots from within. That seems to be the difference--if you can fill the rotation with crap from your system, I think that makes it "developmental." Probably not much practical difference, but this is DC which means that it's all about how you frame the losses and spin the suckiness.

      I'm also slightly concerned because the Marlins have been pretty darned good in ST this year. Although we all know spring training stats don't matter, those who have seen Pinto's Sporting News column should remember that he found a mild correlation between good spring training records and good season performance (although mostly at the extremes). Just a thought anyway.

      By Blogger Michael Taylor, at 3/23/2008 8:45 PM  

    • Michael-

      Whoa, nice! Where did the Angel Berroa for Zech Zinicola come from? If you just made it up, it's still interesting, but did you see that proposed as possible somewhere?

      By Blogger Positively Half St., at 3/23/2008 8:47 PM  

    • I apparently locked on the Zinicola part before reading the rest. Angel Berroa would do no good. Never mind.

      By Blogger Positively Half St., at 3/23/2008 8:50 PM  

    • Chris, get over it. Patty's done, kaput, cooked, a goner. I say he never makes another big league start. He's a career 18-game winner at age 30, with a dead arm. This whole "building arm strength" ruse was a pipedream built up by you and Barry. Power pitchers don't recover from two arm operations. The only successful ones who do are those who develop a different "out" pitch, sometimes a knuckleball. Patty doesn't have that kind of makeup or, apparently, dedication. I could be wrong, but I say he doesn't get picked up anywhere. And given the state of major league starting pitching these days, that is quite damning. I hate to say I told you so, but...

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/23/2008 8:59 PM  

    • Astros are already sniffing around him. I'd be he signs there in the next few days.

      He may very well be done. Patterson has his 'out' pitch. It's his curve. It's that fastball that needs to come back. Nats are banking that it won't. (Even me, someone who's overly optimistic, didn't think it'd be back til mid-season at the earliest, so...)

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 3/23/2008 9:03 PM  

    • Michael-
      'Spin the suckiness'
      Right on. Truer words have never been spoken.

      Re: Patterson,
      I have no doubt that some poor cheesedick operation might take a gamble on him.
      But in all seriousness, how bad do you have to be to get CUT by the Nasties???
      He's gotta be done.....if his elbow is toast how does he get the curve back?? (That puts more stress on the arm than el numero uno)

      By Blogger Rob B, at 3/23/2008 9:52 PM  

    • Why can't the reasons be just what they appear to be?

      - He's not come back fast engough for the Majors

      - They gave him as much time as they were willing.

      - The Nats are in an improved posistion re: pitching

      What more is there?

      They figured cut him, because in their minds, he won't help the team now, we have a few real prospects for the future - and he won't hurt us down the road.

      Nobody should go sleepless over this.

      By Blogger Ray Firsching, at 3/24/2008 8:25 AM  

    • Ray:

      Your first bullet is true.

      Your second bullet is the team's thinking. I'm saying they should have more patience.

      The third bullet is likely not true either, and I think we'll see that about mid-July...

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 3/24/2008 8:27 AM  

    • "Something must've happened behind the scenes that we don't, won't and can't know about."

      IF Patterson comes all the way back with the Rangers or another team and is a successful big-league pitcher again, we'll hear about it. He'll run his yap.

      That's a mighty big if though.

      By Blogger Carl, at 3/24/2008 9:41 AM  

    • Skedeebs,

      Sorry, I can't claim credit for the Berroa scoop. DangerNat on Nationals Inquisition found it in the Kansas City star. Apparently part of the deal is that in exchange for Zincola, Kansas will give us Berroa plus part of his salary. I have no way of evaluating the veracity of this report other than to say that even Kansas City considers it a "rumor." I would suppose that the idea is that Berroa would be a capable and willing backup to Guz and Belliard, unlike Lopez.

      By Blogger Michael Taylor, at 3/24/2008 9:51 AM  

    • Needham,

      Would you still take JP over Beckett? Hahahahaha

      I guess this pretty much sums up why you're sitting in your Mom's basement blogging and not a major league GM.

      Thank you,
      WinWithZimm - proven right again.

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/24/2008 9:54 AM  

    • I'm not sure I ever said I'd take him over Beckett, but if that's how you want to remember it, fine.

      Don't knock my mom's basement. The brownies are excellent.

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 3/24/2008 9:56 AM  

    • This move is two years too late for the Nats. JP could not stay healthy, and as previously posted would never pitch a full season again.

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/24/2008 9:59 AM  

    • i agree with this move. make some room on the roster for lannan or chico or another young buck, J.Patts wasnt the piece that was going to propel the nats to a WS

      By Blogger weckstein, at 3/24/2008 11:56 AM  

    • I agree with that last part.

      But Lannan and Chico are?

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 3/24/2008 11:57 AM  

    • Wish I was wrong, but I have no doubt that money played a role in the move to dump Patterson. Patterson's active roster spot will be taken by a MLB minimum player, the Lerners wanted to avoid a situation where they were paying Patterson to sit on the DL and rehabbing (which the Nats felt was inevitable - and the primary reason for the move) and another pitcher at the MLB minimum when now they only have to pay Lannan or some other kid who will only make the minimum.


      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/24/2008 12:05 PM  

    • The only way that money played a role in the decision to dump Patterson was in the timing. Once the realization was made that his fastball would not be back any time soon (if at all) then it was a no-brainer to release him before the season started after ascertaining that no other team was going to trade for him. You're not cheap because you don't want to pay $637,500 just to prolong the inevitable. I'd say you'd be stupid to do that. And once the realization was made that Patterson needed to be released, doing it last Thursday instead of waiting right up to the deadline also makes perfect sense. Patterson was scheduled to pitch the next day. Why have him do that if you already know you're going to release him?

      By Blogger An Briosca Mor, at 3/24/2008 2:29 PM  

    • Can anyone find anything on Patterson's release on the Nationals mlb site?

      searching on 'John Patterson' reveals that on February 9, he threw 100 pain-free pitches. After that, nothing.

      Could this be another Ryan Churcg v Jim Bowden thing/

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/09/2008 11:28 AM  

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