Thursday, April 12, 2007

A G:TB Public Service Announcement

Yes, the Washington Nationals lost again last night, and yes, they do appear to be on pace for a historically awful season. [The Nats are now 1-8, and I hope they sent Jorge Julio a nice gift basket for that one win. They have yet to score a run in the first three innings of a game this season. They have allowed the most runs in baseball, and have scored the third fewest...a -40 run differential by my math]. But in the spirit of all that is Gheorghe, I come here this morning not to crush the hapless Nats, but to instead show you, the loyal fans of the ugliest team I have seen in years, that "Hey, it could be worse..." (I know, hard to believe, but bear with me.) Let's see if ole Gheorghe can't give you a reason to smile about local sports for a change (don't mention the Wiz, don't mention the Wiz)...

1B - Dmitri Young. You know what, we're starting off with a good one today. Da Meat Hook has been an extremely pleasant surprise this year. He has been one of the few bats in this lineup worth a damn (.296, 1 HR, 4 RBI). By the way, look at how sad those numbers are, and realize Dmitri is currently the star of this team (Zoinks, Scoob...). But, if we're gonna stick to the unfunny and forced premise of this post...
Hey, it could be worse...you could have Adam LaRoche, who also went to a new team this year (the Pirates) and forgot how to hit. 3 hits in 31 ABs, for a cool .097 batting average (throw in 14 Ks and 4 BBs). Yes, I am fully aware that most teams have played fewer than 10 games this year, but blanket generalizations are one of my specialties.

2B - Ronnie Belliard. The only regular hitting above .300, though in very limited at-bats. So, like Dmitri, be happy with him so far, and realize...
Hey, it could be worse...it could still be Jose Vidro, who is a disaster in the Mariners lineup. Bowden might be a moron, but I have no problem with him dumping Vidro on Seattle, especially if Fruto works out.

3B - Ryan Zimmerman. Cornerstone of the franchise. Love the guy...he's athletic AND dreamy. But he has struggled out of the gate (.250, 0 HR, 1 RBI).
Hey, it could be worse...the Nats could have another young third baseman with tons of potential but none of the work ethic of Zimmerman: Edwin Encarnacion, who got benched yesterday for not running out a pop-up. Encarnacion has also failed to live up to expectations for going on three years now, showing zero plate discipline and an extremely suspect glove.

SS - Felipe Lopez. Appears averse to getting on base, which is a real downer, since him stealing a base or two might wake this corpse of a club up. (Wooooow, the Nats have not even ATTEMPTED a stolen base this year...their opponents are 7 for 7.) But (I think you've got the flow now)...
Hey, it could be worse...it could be Cristian Guzman.
Wait for it...


LF - Kory Casto. The rookie is struggling as much as you might imagine.
Hey, it could be worse...it could be Emil Brown of the Royals, who is so terrible he might lose his job to Ross Gload, who I'm betting none of our readers could pick out of a photo array (sorry, too much "Law and Order" last night). At least with Casto there's hope for the future. 33 year old Emil Brown? Not so much.

RF - Austin Kearns. 7 Ks/4 BBs/2 RBI...ugh.
Hey, it could be worse...this one I enjoy a tad too much... it could be Gary Sheffield, who got his way and got his trade, and now can't hit the broad side of a Buick in Detroit. 3 hits in 29 ABs.

CF - Ryan Church ('cause it took Nook half a game to get injured). And look at that, he's hitting .296 with 2 HR and 4 RBI. Well done, Mr. Church. Let's get your mug on a metro bus.
Hey, it could be worse...it could still be Marlon Byrd. Or the vastly overrated Coco Crisp in Boston. My boy Willy Taveras has also seen some early season struggles in Colorado.

C - Brian Schneider. Brian's hitting .111, so give me a second on this one. OK, got it...
Hey, it could be worse...that dick A.J. Pierzynski could be the Nats catcher. What a quality human being he is, and lucky for me, he's hitting .115 with 3 fewer ribbies than Schneider.

Rotation - Patterson, Bergmann, Hill, Chico, Williams. Only Hill has an ERA lower than 4.91... no starter has won a game yet this year... Chico is an epic disaster.
Hey, it could be worse...wow, can it be any worse? As much as I hate to say this, the Yankees starting pitching has been almost as bad, amazingly saved by one good Carl Pavano start. Jeff Weaver could be a National, causing me to stab him in the genitals with a fork. The Giants starters seem atrocious as well, and they might very well be running neck and neck with the Nats all year record-wise. Plus, isn't it fun to root against Barry's team?

Bullpen - Cordero, Bowie, Rauch, Colome (Jesus to you), King, Wagner. On paper, looks good - so far, pretty ugly. But that's OK, they've got a long way to go to catch these guys...
Hey, it could be worse...have you seen what's going on in Philadelphia? I mean, you could probably round up four guys from the bleachers and they would have a better chance of holding a lead. The Phillies bullpen makes the Nats pen look like Hall of Famers. It's a disgrace, which very nicely leads to (where's Captain Segue when you need him?)...

Manager - Manny Acta. I like him, and hope that this impending 45-win season doesn't crush his soul. And I hope his team meeting after last night's loss sparks the club, but I wouldn't count on it.
Hey, it could be worse...Would you rather have a drooling geriatric like Charlie Manuel calling the shots? As an esteemed member of the Gheorghe writing staff once said, Manuel is the Admiral Stockdale of MLB managers. 'Nuff said.

22 comments:

TJ said...

Man do I remember that Wolverines team...they sucked balls:

The Nationals lost again without ever having a lead on Wednesday. After nine games this season, they have led at the end of an inning only once -- in their 7-6 walkoff win over the Marlins on April 4. The only other team in major league history that led after only one inning in its first nine games of a season was the 1884 Detroit Wolverines of the National League. That Detroit team finished 28-84, last in an eight-team league.

Dennis said...

Can we just leave the Nats alone for a bit? I think a moment to themselves will do wonders...

Did you hear Don Imus said something inappropriate on the radio? Yeah, apparently people are pretty upset about it...

TJ said...

This is an Imus-free zone.

And Dennis, this is the nicest we can possibly be to the Nats...it could've been 1,000 words on why these guys will break the '62 Mets record for futility.

Dennis said...

Reason #690 why I love Gheorghe...

Whitney said...

The temptation to fixate on the Nots' woes is great, since (a) they're that bad, and (b) the Wizards are out of the discussion entirely.

It's not even fun to rag on the Wiz, since it was a couple of key injuries that truly felled them in the end and not bad personalities or hapless play by overpaid superstars. Perhaps the Curse of Les Boulez (remember when Tony K was worth a damn?) is alive and well??

TJ said...

Can the Nats be suffering from the "Curse of Le Bowden"?

Mark said...

I'm rooting for the Nats to lose (and lose and lose) only b/c I want to see some disgruntled fan attack him on the streets of DC this summer. He deserves it, many times over.

TJ said...

A player might hurt him first...

Mark said...

However it happens, I'm all for it.

TJ said...

So, Kurt Vonnegut died, eh? I read Breakfast of Champions back in high school (back when I could read) and would rank it in my Top 10 (a distinguished list that includes The Cat in the Hat, the Bible and The Right Stuff).

Mark said...

You read the bible. HA!

TJ said...

Would you believe The Koran?

Mark said...

If you hadn't spelled it like that I might have.

TJ said...

Quran or Qur'an. Take your pick, ass.

TJ said...

This made me laugh:

The Phillies claimed infielder Michael Garciaparra, a supplemental first-round pick in 2001, off waivers from Seattle. Garciaparra is the brother of Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Nomar Garciaparra. The Phillies have a history of acquiring the less famous of baseball brothers: Ken Brett instead of George, Vince DiMaggio instead of Joe or Dom, Juan Bell instead of George, Mike Maddux instead of Greg, Mark Leiter instead of Al, Jeremy Giambi instead of Jason, and Frank Torre instead of Joe.

Mark said...

So you manged to mispell the word despite it having two accpetable spellings? You're truly special.

rob said...

irony is funny.

rob said...

holy crap, the nats really are -40 in run differential on the season. i thought that was comedic license.

Geoff said...

It's fun to look at the odds for Nats games juxtaposed against the rest of the league--last night every other game was in the -110 to -150 range (without excpetion), but the Braves were -275.

Jerry said...

Nice job on the batters. I was wondering how you were going to handle the pitchers. Not an easy job.

Whitney said...

Breaking News: The Nots actually took a lead and didn't blow it, though "Chief" Cordero threatened to do so.

They didn't score in the first three innings once again, but who cares?

TJ said...

Nats pride...either Manny's closed-door meeting or Gheorghe's positivity got through to them. 55 wins here they come...