Saturday, March 7, 2009
#27 Washington Nationals
Last Year: 59-102 Last in NL East
This Year: Last in NL East
The Nationals have been no more of a disaster than when they were known as the Montreal Expos. The only difference is they play in a brand-new stadium that they are not worthy of. Not only is the team a mess but the front office is a mess. It was discovered in February that prospect Esmailyn Gonzalez wasn't really Esmailyn Gonzalez. He was Carlos Daniel Alvarez Lugo. He was also 23 and not the 19 year old they thought he was. Since then Jose Rijo was fired as their Dominican scout and GM Jim Hendry has resigned under pressure and the fact that the FBI is investigating a possible scam of people skimming bonuses from Dominican prospects. It is not going well in Washington.
Opening Day Lineup w/projections
SS Cristian Guzman .305 7 HR 45 RBI
CF Lastings Milledge .274 15 HR 58 RBI 27 SB
3B Ryan Zimmerman .281 22 HR 97 RBI
1B Adam Dunn .245 40 HR 103 RBI
RF Elijah Dukes .263 25 HR 88 RBI
LF Josh Willingham .261 22 HR 83 RBI
C Jesus Flores .259 10 HR 62 RBI
2B Anderson Hernandez .263 1 HR 42 RBI
P John Lannan
LHP John Lannnan 10-13 3.87 ERA 121 K
LHP Scott Olsen 10-14 4.14 ERA 120 K
RHP Shawn Hill 5-13 4.78 ERA 97 K
RHP Daniel Cabrera 8-15 5.15 ERA 151 K
RHP Collin Balester 5-12 5.32 ERA 102 K
CP RHP Joel Hanrahan 4.21 ERA 19 SV 82 K
Best-Case Scenario: Elijah Dukes and Scott Olsen stay out of police reports. Troubled prospects (Dukes, Milledge, Cabrera) finally realize their immense potential. Zimmerman reaches the next level and produces on a David Wright level. Cristian Guzman continues to be healthy and revive his career playing at All-Star level. This team battles the Florida Marlins for 4th place in the division.
Worst-Case Scenario: Guzman get hurt, unable to get any starting pitching, the scandal widens and brings down more in the organization, and Adam Dunn moves on. Prospects move towards failure as they bat .250. Cabrera continues to not be able to find the plate. This team losses 100 games for a second straight year.
Player Most Important to Success: Scott Olsen. He has the potential to provide what this team desperately needs. This team as most terrible teams lack good pitching. He has the abilty to pitch 200 innings with an ERA around 3.00. If he can win 12-15 games this will keep the team from being a laughingstock and give the National fans a reason to watch.
Outlook: This team was a mess in Montreal but it has only gotten worse in Washington. In Montreal while they couldn't afford to keep them this team developed Vladimir Guerrero, Larry Walker, Orlando Cabrera, and Rondell White. This current squad has no clue what they are doing. They should be rebuilding from the ground up with youth and talent but they are wasting money signing players like Adam Dunn. This team tried to pay 125 million for Teixiera. What is the point of that move. This team is not one player away from success they are 5-6 players away. Their proximity to Baltimore is making them make the same mistake by getting overpaid free agents every year stopping you from completely starting over which is needed. Hopefully, the new GM understands this. This year's squad will be boring, slow and will play absolutely terrible defense behind terrible pitching. Dunn will keep them from losing a 100 games but they will lose more than 90.