More Thoughts From My Head
The Post has a bunch of notes up about the Nats' spring training, and I thought I would download some of my own thoughts on the upcoming March to 2006 Glory.
1. If you are going down to Florida to watch the Nats in Space Coast Stadium, for goodness sake, have a meal at Conchy Joe's. Try the fried alligator, it's scrump-diddly-icious.
(Conchy Joe's Seafood Restaurant, (321) 253-3131, 1477 Pineapple Ave Melbourne, FL 32935)
2. The Fielding Dutchman, Ryan Zimmerman, has a PECOTA projection of .289/.334/.462, with 13 homers and 37 doubles. That's a very promising start in its own right. I have a sneaky suspicion that Dutch with have a bit more OBP than that. His 28.3 projected VORP is second only to Soriano's 31.5. Of course, Soriano's .271/.321/.504 line creates that VORP because he's projected as a second baseman. By the way, are we still calling him Dutch?
3. OK, so who is on the Nationals this year? What have we lost from the 2005 season, and what have we gained?
Lost: Esteban Loaiza (A's), Hector Carrasco (Angels), Vinny Castilla (Padres), Jamey Carroll (Rockies), Brad Wilkerson (Rangers), Terrmel Sledge (Rangers), Preston Wilson (Astros), Junior Spivey (Cards), Gary Bennett (Cards), Wil Cordero (out of baseball), Jeffrey Hammonds (out of baseball), Rick Short (Japan), Endy Chavez (Mets), Keith Osik (unknown), Matt Cepicky (Marlins)
oh good grief....
Tomo Okha (Brewers), Zach Day (Rockies), John Halama (Orioles), Sun Woo Kim (Rockies), Claudio Vargas (D'Backs), Matt White (Phillies)
Obviously, some of these guys were traded or released mid-2005, but that just shows you the turn over from one season to the next.
Found: Brian Lawrence (Padres), Marlon Anderson (Mets), Ramon Ortiz (Angels), Felix Rodriguez (Giants), Bob Fick (Padres), Bernie Castro (Orioles), Damian Jackson (Padres), Matt LeCroy (Twins), Alfonso Soriano (Rangers), Michael Tucker (Phillies).
Anything you notice here? The Nationals seem to be some sort of repository for fringe major league talent? Has beens? Never weres? The amount of roster movement is extraordinary for a .500 team that is, for all intents and purposes, not going to go places with a little extra depth. It looks like a lot of roster movement for roster movement's sake. I can only think of one reason why. (By the way, have at Trader Jim's wiki page on baseball-reference.com).
4. Is it just me or is the schedule funny this year? You know, funny. The Nats seem to have a bunch of good games against quality teams on the weekend, while leaving the weekdays with some dreck. It's just me, isn't it? OK, just drop it.
5. If I were the new owner of the Nationals, I would ditch DC and get a stadium built by Tim Kaine in Northern Virginia. They are pretty much crazy in the DC City Council. I don't blame Bob DuPuy at all for not wanting MLB to do business with these folks. Just my opinion, folks, you can have yours, too.
6. The outfield is a mess. I mean, an utter disaster. It's a shame, because Church-Wilkerson-Guillen wasn't half bad, when it was healthy.
7. A year later, the Nationals logo and jersey isn't getting any better. I just can't keep getting the fact that it's a throwback to the early 1980's out of my head. What's next, Asia concerts on non-game days? Joe Theismann back in the spotlight?
It's just me, isn't it. OK, just drop it.