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OK, lets talk alittle about the Washington Nationals...

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Postby stumpak » Tue Nov 23, 2004 10:56 am

Cordero was a #1 pick purpose-drafted to be their closer. If this was a good team where the fans would get pissed off about blown saves, I would say Cordero would be at-risk, but on a crappy team where they view him as their future solution I think they will let him work through things.

Also, he clearly has the skills, so their is chance he can get his control in order and put up a nice season.
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Postby dleoboyd » Wed Nov 24, 2004 2:38 pm

Here is how I would set the Nationals lineup:

1-Brad Wilkerson (L)
2-Nick Johnson (L)
3-Jose Vidro (S)
4-Jose Guillen (R)
5-Vinny Castilla (R)
6-Terrmel Sledge (L)
7-Christian Guzman (S)
8-Brain Schneider (L)
9-Pitcher

I think that most people are overrating Endy Chavez. Too many people see his SB's and think he should be leading off. The problem he has is that you can't steal first base. Basically he doesn't get on base enough to be the table setter for your power hitters. In my lineup, I'm going to assume that Nick Johnson is healthy, which makes Endy Chavez the 4th OF.

Christian Guzman also has a low OBP. So he's not really a good leadoff hitter candidate either. I like his defense, but offensively, he deserves to be toward the bottom of the lineup.

Wilkerson has done well in the leadoff spot previously. Although he also has good power and could be used in other spots of the lineup, I think his OBP and decent speed makes him the best leadoff hitter for the team.

Jose Vidro is best batting 2nd or 3rd. Unless there are still issues with his injury, there is no reason to put him anywhere else.

I like Nick Johnson 2nd because of his plate discipline and ability to get on base. People forget that when healthy he can also run a little bit. If Jose Guillen can do as well as he has in the last 2 years, Jose Guillen should bat 3rd or 4th. He seems to have the most power on the team (maybe Wilkerson) so I'll throw him in the #4 spot.

I also like:
1-Brad Wilkerson (L)
2-Jose Vidro (S)
3-Nick Johnson (L)
4-Jose Guillen (R)
5-Terrmel Sledge (L)
6-Vinny Castilla (R)
7-Christian Guzman (S)
8-Brain Schneider (L)
9-Pitcher

In this lineup, Johnson and Vidro are interchangeable, but I decided to put the switch hitter between the two lefties. You could even put Johnson leading off and Wilkerson 3rd. Cleanup is now handled by the power hitter Bowden wanted, Jose Guillen. Sledge still has some room to grow and I'm putting the veteran Castilla behind him for protection. This also makes it right-left-right for 4, 5 & 6 in the lineup. Although it is not is not a requirement to set your lineup with alternating bats, when you have so many interchangeable people in your lineup, it doesn't hurt to alternate.


The pitching still needs work. I will be upset if Bowden does not address this. The extra salary brought on with Guillen & Guzman could have been used there and Rivera & Maicer Izturis would have done fine instead. As you can tell, I'm still a bit disappointed in that trade with Anaheim. First, that cash could have been used to address the team's major weaknesses (pitching). Second, player performance tend to peak at age 27. Rivera & Izturis both have room to grow and would cost the team less than Guillen & Guzman. The overall performance of Guillen & Guzman may be better than that of Izturis & Rivera in 2005, but it won't be by that much. That money could be better used on pitching.


The other reason I think people are overrating Endy Chavez is because of his defense. I wouldn't rate him any higher than average. Clay Davenport's Defensive Ratings had him at -4 Runs Above Average in 2004 and 2 RAA in 2003. That means that he is about average. He has no signs of power and as you know, his OBP is BAD. Don't get impressed with diving plays. He's not as good as you like to think.

As I said previously, typical performance for baseball players is to peak at age 27. If you plot age and performance, a players graph tends to look like a bell curve. Guillen may be a late bloomer, but he's not going to get a lot better. Guillen did improve quite a bit from actually getting to bat in Cincinatti. That was going from age 26 to 27. He didn't improve a lot going to age 28. He may be a little better at age 29, but I don't think he will get much better. Going into his age 26 season, Rivera still has room to grow, especially with his improvement from 2003 to 2004 (from age 24 to 25). Endy Chavez is going into his age 27 season and hasn't shown much improvement. Don't expect too much more. Guzman is decent and needs to stay healthy. Given the injury history and the potential of Maicer Izturis (younger and more talented brother of Cesar Izturis), I'd give the job to Maicer.

I think that the offensive production will be fine for the Nationals next year. There are still major concerns over the pitching staff, but the starting rotation has quite a bit of talent. John Patterson has the stuff to be a top of the rotation SP (if he improves his control he could be 2005's version of Oliver Perez), as does Tony Armas and Livan Hernandez is a work-horse. Plus there are quite a few talented RP on the roster: Chad Cordero, Francis Beltran, Luis Ayala, TJ Tucker, Jon Rauch, and Joey Eischen (who I think is a FA).

I don't think that they'll compete for a playoff spot, but a .500 season isn't out of the question.
Last edited by dleoboyd on Fri Nov 26, 2004 2:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby wrveres » Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:32 pm

Nationals got JJ Davis in a trade today ...
He might need a little more AAA time, but he is certainly better that Endy Chavez ..


I was thinking about this the other night some more, and with the addition of JJ ...

Guillen, Wilkerson, Davis .. Not a bad OF
Guzman, Vidro, Schneider .. Good gloves up the middle ..
Johnson and Castilla on the Corners ..
:-?
If, IF, they can get good pitching out of
Livan
Patterson (tearing it up in the Dominican leagues too)
Armas
and Rauch ..

They have a solid shot at .500
It doesn't help that they have to play Philly, Florida and Atlanta on a regular basis though. (Notice how I purposely left out a certain NY team?) :-°
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Postby Amazinz » Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:41 pm

wrveres wrote:They have a solid shot at .500
It doesn't help that they have to play Philly, Florida and Atlanta on a regular basis though. (Notice how I purposely left out a certain NY team?) :-°

That works for me. I would have left out a certain NY team too because those are the three teams they will be vying for second place with and possibly the WC. We all know who is going to take the division. :-D
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Postby wrveres » Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:43 pm

Amazinz wrote:
wrveres wrote:They have a solid shot at .500
It doesn't help that they have to play Philly, Florida and Atlanta on a regular basis though. (Notice how I purposely left out a certain NY team?) :-°

That works for me. I would have left out a certain NY team too because those are the three teams they will be vying for second place with and possibly the WC. We all know who is going to take the division. :-D


well if recent history is any precursor ...

Atlanta? :-? ;-7
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Postby Amazinz » Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:45 pm

Atlanta begins the slide we all expected last year. ;-D
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Maine has a good swing for a pitcher but on anything that moves, he has no chance. And if it's a fastball, it has to be up in the zone. Basically, the pitcher has to hit his bat. - Mike Pelfrey
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Postby wrveres » Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:49 pm

Amazinz wrote:Atlanta begins the slide we all expected last year. ;-D


you may be right, They have no money.
Bring back the Braves of the 80's ? ;-D
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Postby grammysboy » Thu Nov 25, 2004 11:07 am

In this lineup, Johnson and Vidro are interchangeable, but I decided to put the switch hitter between the two lefties. You could even put Johnson leading off and Wilkerson 3rd. Cleanup is now handled by the power hitter Bowden wanted, Jose Guillen. Sledge still has some room to grow and I'm putting the veteran Castilla behind him for protection. This also makes it right-left-right for 4, 5 & 6 in the lineup. Although it is not is not a requirement to set your lineup with alternating bats, when you have so many interchangeable people in your lineup, it doesn't hurt to alternate

I had Johnson for a while last year and I wouldn't be a bit afraid of letting him lead off. You're exactly right about the wheels. When healthy, he's probably capable of 15+ SB. His BA isn't great, but his OBP is almost .360. Could be a nice $1 pick-up at the tail end of our auction next spring. The key phrase there is "When healthy"!
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Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Thu Nov 25, 2004 11:34 am

wrveres wrote:Nationals got JJ Davis in a trade today ...
He might need a little more AAA time, but he is certainly better that Endy Chavez ..


Where did you see this, wrveres? I haven't seen it anywhere else.
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Postby ensanimal » Thu Nov 25, 2004 6:43 pm

GotowarMissAgnes wrote:
wrveres wrote:Nationals got JJ Davis in a trade today ...
He might need a little more AAA time, but he is certainly better that Endy Chavez ..


Where did you see this, wrveres? I haven't seen it anywhere else.


from rotoworld...


Latest News Nov. 24, 2004 - 6:51 pm et


Nationals acquired outfielder J.J. Davis from the Pirates for outfielder Antonio Sucre.
Jim Bowden can never have enough outfielders. This should be something of a disappointment to Davis. The best he can hope for in Washington is being on the bad side of a platoon with Terrmel Sledge or Endy Chavez, a role that could have been saved for Val Pascucci (.298/.423/.577 in Triple-A last season). It's still an improvement over Pittsburgh, but he might have been able to do better elsewhere. Then again, if any team really wanted Davis, the Pirates probably wouldn't have settled for Sucre, a toolsy 21-year-old who hit .240/.327/.353 the South Atlantic League last season.
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