Wednesday, February 24, 2010

StanSpeak: Spring Training Edition

Have no fear, lady and gentlemen: even with this blog's extended hiatus, the StanSpeak Translator was well taken care of. We didn't leave that bad boy out in the yard to rust, have dogs pee on it, or to be buried under 14 feet of snow. Nosiree. It's as good as ever. (Note: that does not mean it's actually good).

As always, when he speaks, we stand ready to translate. So with his latest QNA with the esteemed Bill Ladson, it's time to figure out what the recently quiet Stanley is really thinking.


If you look at how much has changed over the last 12 months and how few track suits and leather pants are floating around, there has been a major revamping -- from the front office to us finally, despite years of assurance, filling the scouting department to the coaching staff, even if we had to tell Steve McCatty that he couldn't have his copies of Penthouse and Hustler sent here.

On the field, we saw real progress over the course of last season, especially with our new groundskeeper -- young players like 28-year old Nyjer Morgan who contributed and showed real promise, and 26-year old Garrett Mock's 5.62 ERA. We had an aggressive offseason of profit-seeking, and all of that leads to the next wave, which so many people are looking forward to, but that may never actually come (see: Willems, Colton). All those elements put together really gives the franchise a different feel than it had a year ago, although when you're already in the Marianas Trench, there's not much further low you can go. There's a lot of optimism for the future because we've managed to kill off all the rational fans, leaving the Kool Aid drinkers and mouthbreathes. And those morons, thanks to a lack of real intense media coverage of our lousy franchise, will suck up whatever we tell 'em. Act now. Tickets are going fast!


It's not one thing, but if I had to pick, it would be getting rid of that leather-panted mope. It's the steady, consistent overall program to change things after our years of malaise -- to upgrade things cumulatively, which has resulted in the positive attitude that you are sensing, and not that dopey positive affirmations crap that the village idiot Manny Acta used to ramble about. Things are on the upswing, but we still have a 34 handicap.

We have always known from Day 1 that everything will hinge on what kind of starting pitching you can get, which is why we ignored it for so long and picked up Danny Cabrera and Pedro Astacio, and how quickly you can get a stable rotation in here. But that would also cost money, or require our moron GM to make shrewd trades that didn't net him some magic beans. Obviously, on that front, our future looks quite a bit brighter than it did a year ago, thanks to our years of incompetence netting us a winning lotto ticket with Strasburg. Hey, it worked for Ted Leonsis. Why not us? That would be reason No. 1 for enhanced optimism. Well, that and our rotation which now features Jason Marquis, Livan Hernandez, Miguel Batista, and some kids who all sorta look the same and pitch similarly terribly. But it wouldn't be that optimistic without all the other things to go along with it.


As soon as they can make it up here reliably at a date behind when they'll be eligible for Super-2 status, that's when we will bring them up. We will not bring them up sooner than they are able, and we will not leave them down there longer than they need to be down there to maximize the length of time we can keep their salaries low.


There is also a window to what we could see as the 3rd-place contending team we could, but might not, be in 2011. If Stephen is what we think he is and what we paid him to be, if Chien-Ming Wang can come back like we think he can (assuming that virgin we sacrificed pays off), if Jordan Zimmermann comes back like we think he can, all of a sudden, you have a real big-time rotation, potentially, perhaps, maybe, no guaranteed need apply. And that's what you need before anything else good can happen, which one could use to infer that I don't think anything good will happen this year. I mean, have you SEEN Jason Marquis when he's having a bad game? Yeesh. And Wang had an ERA of like 34, people!


I think I agree with everyone in baseball who's on his side: He has done a great job cleaning up the little piles of poop Jim left all over the building. He came in here on a real level of expertise and respect with him. I like his aura. We saw that in his dealings with colleagues throughout baseball and how he didn't force other GMs to react uncomfortably to him staring at his F-level "star" wife's saline-filled rack. We saw that in the caliber of professional talent we were able to attract, like his father. Say what you will, but the old man works for Monopoly money. He thinks it's real. Senile bastard. That all speaks of the respect Mike has and his impressive collection of Hawaiian shirts. I thought Mike was aggressive in helping transform the front office, and I think it has paid off in all areas. Apparently he didn't want to be saddled with the same incompetent and understaffed scouting operations we've been running out there for years, even as we told everyone that we were all on the right track. Go figure.


  • Chris Needham, batting 1.000 on the young season. And remember, the pitchers are ahead of the hitters this time of year.

    By Anonymous Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_for_Me, at 2/25/2010 1:12 AM  

  • Another classic. Thanks Chris.

    By Blogger Section 222, at 2/25/2010 8:27 AM  

  • Sorry to interject politics here but why do i have the feeling that the same people who seem happily, some might say blindingly oblivious to how poorly this franchise has been run are the same people who thought GW Bush was a great president?

    I didn't renew my season tix this year, the first i have done so since the first season, and i'm glad i didn't. I will still go to games and support the team but i just got tired of feeling like i was was getting my pocket picked while the Nats did absolutely nothing to put a descent product on the field.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2/25/2010 11:54 AM  

  • I just got tired of feeling like i was was getting my pocket picked while the Nats did absolutely nothing to put a [decent] product on the field.

    Give that fan a contract! You have just decoded the "Lerners are cheeeeep!" mantra for the uninitiated.

    And as an extra added attraction of young pitching talent: the 2010 Nationals now feature a Large Tub of Goo on the mound!!!11!! Break out the Deepin Dots!

    By Blogger Bote Man, at 2/25/2010 12:21 PM  

  • Sorry to interject politics here but why do i have the feeling that the same people who seem happily, some might say blindingly oblivious to how poorly this franchise has been run are the same people who thought GW Bush was a great president?

    The Lerners are Cheap crowd over at the WaPo Nats Journal blog seems to be made up entirely of Bush fans and other such wingnuts. Likewise the crowd that idolized Mark Zuckerman's former employer almost as much as they idolize Zuckerman while they toss money to him the same way Wilbur Mills once did to Fanne Fox. The favorite substitute owner for the anti-Lerner crowd is Fred Malek, who's about as right wing Republican as they come.

    So if you're feeling the way you do, you're seriously deluded.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2/25/2010 3:01 PM  

  • In all seriousness, does anyone know the Lerners' politics? They seem like typical right-wing businessmen, but I have no proof of that. Could this be why Obama has consistently boycotted and at times bad-mouted this franchise?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2/26/2010 12:27 AM  

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