Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: AdamKilgoreWP and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Sports and Redskins  |  RSS

Lo Duca, Milledge prepare for Big Apple

Real quick: I'll be on "Washington Post Live" on Comcast SportsNet at 5 p.m. We'll talk Caps, obviously, but I'm told we'll get in some baseball as well. Tune in if you like.

Nats: Here's catcher Paul Lo Duca on his return to Shea Stadium, where he played two seasons.

"It's just going to be interesting," Lo Duca said. "I really don't know what to say. I've played it in my mind probably the last four months what's going to happen when I go there, or how I'm going to feel personally. This and that. You know, and that has nothing to do with missing the Mets. It's missing the fans, and missing the security guards, the parking lot guys, the guys you became friends with for a couple years. That's it. I could care less about missing the guys. We're going to see those guys, and my job now is to beat them up. I could care less about that. That's not going to be emotional at all. It's just going to be more emotional seeing people I haven't seen in a while."

Lo Duca said he isn't exactly rooting for the Mets. "I want them to lose every game," he said. "That's nature."

Lastings Milledge, too, is returning to New York. "It's the biggest stage," he told me in spring training. "If you can handle it there, you can handle it anywhere."

More on this in tomorrow's notebook. (I gotta hang on to something for the $.35/$.50-edition.)

Let's take a quick look at how the former Mets/new Nationals are doing, followed by the former Nationals/new Mets.

Paul Lo Duca: .200/.317/.286, 3 doubles, 4 RBI, 0 for 5 in throwing out base stealers.

Lastings Milledge: .308/.351/.442, 1 HR, 4 doubles, 5 RBI, 1 SB, a single-played-into-a-double in center field and some curious base running.

Brian Schneider: .324/.409/.324, 0 extra-base hits, 6 RBI, 2 of 5 throwing out base stealers.

Ryan Church: .326/.383/.419, 1 double, 1 HR, 4 RBI.

So, does any of these early-season numbers change your feelings about the Nationals' offseason moves regarding these guys? And what are/were your feelings about those moves in the first place?

By Barry Svrluga  |  April 14, 2008; 3:22 PM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: The bullpen: Shaky strength?
Next: Attendance: Too early to tell?

Comments

crickets chirping

Posted by: Anonymous | April 14, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Milledge is starting to grow on me. I like hearing that he's doing things like apologizing to his teammates about that single-played-into-a-double, and supposedly made up with some unnamed opposing player during Spring Training that he allegedly "showed up" last season.

Lo Duca, ehhh. Even with those 3 doubles, I keep getting the feeling that he'll pop out or ground out weakly whenever there's men on base with two outs. Jury's still out on him for me.

And totally OT, and I posted this at the bottom of the previous thread, but looks like the Nats' FatHead logo is on clearance sale for $50:

http://www.fathead.com/mlb/washington-nationals/washington-nationals-logo/

Hopefully that's not a harbinger of their season... :-}

Posted by: Juan-John | April 14, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Was L-Millz singing when he said that? Or rapping, perhaps?

Obviously we'd all prefer Brian "Off The" Schneider to LoPuca at this point. But that might change if their offensive numbers were flipped. Schneider's not going to bat .300, he's going to bat .245 or .265. And his defense is worth, say, 20 points of batting average. So Paulie probably needs to bat .285 with at least some gap power in order to make us feel like the "trade" was a good one.

On Milledge, different story, a lot of us have said he and Churchie might put up similar numbers this year but that even if so, the exchange was well worth it given that Lastings is a prospect and Church is a servicable major league outfielder. We're a bit worried about Milledge's defense in center but overall fine with that part of the deal.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

It's two-fold.

You know that Schneider's average won't stay that high through the course of the season and Lo Duca's average won't stay that low. Milledge has a bit more speed and will get on base more than Church. Church will have a few more dingers.

Posted by: FeaturePresentationOnline.com | April 14, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Note that though Milledge's average is nearly 20 points lower than Church's his slugging is over thirty points higher. Church is benefiting from being in a great lineup. Watch when Zimm gets back to hitting how Milledge sustains this average - even gets a boost - while Church regresses to his mean.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 14, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

And by "we" in my previous post I meant myself and possibly some other people that might agree with me. I'm not sure why I wrote it like that. I guess I think that's the general consensus here but I didn't mean to speak for everyone.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

I never thought Church got a fair shake here. I was glad for him. I was glad for Schneider to get to play for a contender. Lastings was worth it, and Pauly Walnuts - I love the doubles and your frinedship with the littles. You sound like Immelman after his master's win. That's the first time I've heard the winner thank the 100's of volunteers and workers who make this place so special. And he thanked them first.

Barry, know you're busy, and joebleux is doing his usual best to defend you and all things WaPo, but I would love to see a post on the radar gun v. Pitch/fx laser speeds on Cordero. I know the cops love laser for being much more accurate than radar. Is the loss of velocity real or perceived?

Posted by: flynnie | April 14, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

flynnie, I'll bow to your expertise here. I'm sure that you are correct in thinking that Randy St. Claire is an idiot who knows zippo about judging a pitcher's velocity and uses nothing but a potentially faulty stadium radar gun to measure same.

I mean, heck, he's probably never even paid attention before while Chad was pitching, so how could he possibly know whether his velocity is down or not without consulting the almighty f/x system?

Posted by: joebleux | April 14, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

LoPuca, Bob?

LOL!!!

Posted by: NatsNut | April 14, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Bob - Agreed - I am one of the "we."

Posted by: Patty | April 14, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse

I think that Ryan has 8 RBI, rather than 4 as you say. It also appears that he would be leading the Nats in RBI and average and thrid in OPS. Whether or not he "regresses to his mean," we get to see everyday that Austin Kearns doesn't produce any better than that mean, leaves a lot of runners on base and makes the occasional lapse in the field (such as the "hit" that was key to the first inning outsburst on Saturday). In my book, Bowden continues to have some explaining to do.

Interesting that people now say that Church benefits from being in a good lineup everyday. While he was with the Nats, JimBo and his friends in the press kept telling us that Church was not a starter for most clubs. And yet he starts with the Mets.

Of all the mysteries of the past two years in DC, the Cold Pizza Man's attitude in favor of and against certain players is the most enduring. I keep hoping for Kearns and WMP to make me eat my skeptical words (and WMP made a very good start last fall) and I don't want Church or Schneider to vindicate themselves against the Nats, but I do wonder.

Posted by: Penn Quarter | April 14, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Let's see where they are at the end of the season. I miss Schneider. Church will go into one of his long slides and probably won't be starting for the mets come September. Milledge is going to be a great player. He has made some stupid rookie mistakes, but that will change over time. He will a great hitter and a great player for this team.

Posted by: brothbart | April 14, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

114: Now we just need to get Milledge and Mo to catch fly balls with 2 hands.

i have some bad news for you, 114. it looked to me like WMP *DID* use two hands on the ball he botched sunday. at least from the 1B side mezzanine it looked like it.

506: i know i keep harping on it, but two weeks worth of stats means almost nothing. unless you're going to compare their two weeks from july 14 to july 28 as well.

that said, i'll still take milledge over church. even if it's just because i think the long-term potential is much better and ignore this season.

so i'll take the overall essential swap of those four. regardless of what two weeks of stats tell us (very little).

Posted by: 231 | April 14, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, Bob, I think it's safe to speak in the plural first person on that topic.

Posted by: John in Mpls | April 14, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

I still love the trade. And I concur with 231 who said, "two weeks worth of stats means almost nothing." Let's start comparing after the first month of the season.

And just for fun, look at these stats, as a starter position by position, and tell me which team this is:

Pos. / avg / obp / slg
C: / .250 / .314 / .344
1B: / .107 / .297 / .357
2B: / .170 / .185 / .208
3B: / .260 / .315 / .460
SS: / .208 / .240 / .292
LF: / .341 / .413 / .561
CF: / .190 / .314 / .286
RF: / .304 / .360 / .457

Posted by: e | April 14, 2008 4:20 PM | Report abuse

I bet if the stats looked better on our end, we wouldn't be saying "two weeks is not enough."

Posted by: Just Sayin' | April 14, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Patty and John in Mpls, for picking me up on that one!

And yes, until he's hitting .285 and blocking balls in the dirt, he's LoPuca in my book.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

When the Nats check cleared, LoDuca stopped trying. Oh how I miss Schneider.
As for Church, a fresh start is all he needed and I wish him well. In the past week, Milledge has dropped an easy fly and let a single turn into a double.
The good news is that the Learners saved money this offseason so we could continue to watch AAAA ball in a MLB stadium.

Posted by: ChrisC | April 14, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

joebleux, you're getting hysterical as you man the WaPo defenses yet again. If you'll recall, I asked earlier whether Randy St. Clair was "crazy like a fox" in allowing the mis-information about Chief to circulate, the better to surprise the opposition. He wouldn't be the first coach to use this tactic. I'm not hatin'. We've got conflicting data, and I'm really interested in what it means. I know of no one better equipped than Barry or Dave to answer my questions. I hope they will when they get a chance.

Posted by: flynnie | April 14, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

This is a great discussion point. I think Milledge is perfect for this team and worth the loss of Church and Schneider. So many people think of it as tit-for-tat between those 2 and Milledge and LoDuca but obviously that is not the case. I have no clue what they were thinking getting LoDuca, but it doesn't invalidate the Milledge trade. This guy is already a key part of this franchise and will be for years and years to come.

Posted by: GoNats | April 14, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

e, the answer to your question is the New York Yankees.

Posted by: faNATic | April 14, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Yea, the numbers don't look so great at the moment, but I know we were trading for the future and I have a good feeling about Milledge.

I do miss Schneider very much. I wanted him to retire a National. And I do hope Church breaks out this year, just not against us.

LoDuca's comments are the polar opposite of classy.

Posted by: NatsNut | April 14, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

faNATic -- you are correct!

And do we think that these pathetic numbers for the Yankees are going to last throughout the year? I think not. And I am in no way saying the Nats will be able to match the Yanks in offense, I'm just saying that 2 weeks of stats means absolutely nothing.

Posted by: e | April 14, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

I have daily debates with my family and friends on this trade. I think Church is an okay player but had topped out here. I seem to remember him starting out strong and tailing off. I think Schneider was one of the most overrated players in Nats history -- he didn't do enough offensively and was overrated defensively. His ability to throw runners out tailed off. I think he got too much credit for handling pitchers -- they throw the ball, not the catcher. LoDuca is better offensively and Lastings will be better than Church at season's end IMO.

But given the performance of the pitchers so far this year I've gotten a lot of "I told you so's".

Do people here think Schneider was at least in part responsible for the pitcher's overachieving last year?

Posted by: Ray | April 14, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

231, I totally agree with you on the two weeks of stats. My garbled point was that Church's stats are inflated and Milledge's might be a bit deflated right now. I was suggesting, though, that Milledge's ability to hit more extra base hits already suggest that he will be better THIS season, since a lot of Churchie's hits must be singles, which are the flukiest of hits, generally.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 14, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

joebleux-considering your posts over the past two years, are you on the Post's payroll? If you are, I think disclosure is fair. Everyone respects defending a paycheck. But you get real nasty real quick if anyone suggests that our reporters might be wrong. And you lurk until the WaPo is criticized. On this particular error, Barry's statement that Chief is throwing in the 84-86 range, you first got it bass ackwards, saying that pitch speed is faster at the plate. Now you're saying anyone who questions Barry's reporting that Chief in throwing in the 84-86 mph range is saying "Randy St. Claire must be an idiot" and is a slave to the "almighty pitch f/x system." Are you a WaPo troll?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 14, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

I loved the trade from the start, even without considering LoDuca. I think that Jimbow fleeced Manaya (then again i thought that the Lopez, Kearns, Wagner deal was a steal and how it just kind of looks like both organizations pawned off some dead weight). Either way, i doubt that any of these numbers really hold up. Most likely i'd say Milledge, then LoDuca, then Church, then Schneider's numbers continue to look like this as the season progresses. It's also nice that Schneider is hitting .324, but he's not doing a ton of damage with all the singles.

If all of these numbers do hold up in the end it will simply have been a great deal for both teams. Church and Milledge were not going to perform like this where they started off. I couldn't care less about how LoDuca performs, as long as Flores continues to develop anything we get out of LoDuca or Estrada is just a bonus.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

It was a great trade. A no-brainer, in my view, for a team like the Nats that is not going to contend seriously this season, and in truth, not for a couple seasons because of the current void of high-caliber starting pitching at the MLB level.

In that context, the Nats basically got Milledge for nothing, because neither Schneider nor Church were ever going to be key pieces of a contender in DC. So this year's stats really don't mean much in my view unless Milledge's stats show him to be a complete bust. Whatever Schneider does this season, he is going to be past his prime (however you define that for Schneider) by the time the Nats are potentially competitive. And Church is not young and never was going to put it together in DC. While so far I strongly dislike LoPuca, he's really beside the point too--by the time this team is ready to contend, either Flores, or someone else, is going to be the catcher.

Posted by: Coverage is lacking | April 14, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

I don't think you can compare stats across years with different teams... in other words, you can't look at Church or Schneider this year and compare them to last year's performance... If you could, then getting rid of Endy Chavez looks absolutely terrible... but he would never have done anything in Washington, and the same is probably true with Church. Schneider was a bit more professional, and I think he would probably be less affected by the change of scenery than Chruch.

I know that I am speaking gibberish to the SABRmetricians out there, but what will make these trades work for the Nats will be the ability of the team to foster a culture of success and winning... which is probably the one thing that Lo Duca has going for him... he doesn't like to lose, and he's going to push the rest of the team to meet his expectation... Whether he can do it without chafing, we'll see.

In other words, chemistry and synergy.

Posted by: Wigi | April 14, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

I dont get this "Learners saved money" attitude. Where were we going to spend? Show me the big impact free agent that we should have gotten. Should we have signed Barry Zito 2 years ago? Should we have signed Andruew Jones last year? Maybe we should have traded for Juan Pierre? Show me a good pickup that would have satisfied your appetite for a shockingly high payroll. Show me something that would have made a difference. Show me a decent free agent signing in the last 4 years that we had a legit shot at.

Bowden traded for two guys who were top 30 on the last BA top 100 list they were eligible for. I really cant see how anyone would dislike the moves of getting younger, cheaper, and better.


p.s. Before you say Soriano, would you really have wanted him for more then the cubs paid? Would he really have signed? Would he really have been worth it?

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

It's early. Very early. it's only been 15 games, you have to take all of these numbers with a grain of salt. To put it in persepctive - the notoriously light hitting Jason Kendall is the best hitter in baseball right now.

Even better, Schneider is hitting better than David Wright, Mark Teixera, Miguel Cabrera, and David Ortiz.

This is not a trade you can evaluate until July, bare minimum, and maybe not until next season.

Posted by: NationalsPride Mike | April 14, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Wigi,
I think LoDuca will chafe. Not just because he chafes me (shoot, he gives me a full on rash) but it just doesn't jive with the atmosphere. His yapping didn't seem to help in last week's slump.

Posted by: NatsNut | April 14, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

LoDuca's attitude is something that I think this team should at least be exposed to. Even if it chafes for now, they'll know what a winner (and yes, he is a winner) acts like and sounds like for those years that they become competitive. Until then, LoDuca might clash with the team but if worst comes to worst, he doesn't perform, nobody likes him, he gets cut, Flores catches the 2nd half of the year.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Regarding the accuracy of radar guns vs. PITCHf/x, I'm no authority on the subject. It seems however, that the PITCHf/x system brackets the range of speeds a pitch spans until it crosses home plate (or not), given that initial and terminal velocity are recorded. A radar gun records speed a a single point, presumably as the ball leaves the pitcher's hand, which might correspond to initial velocity per PITCHf/x.

That's about as much as I know. I've put the question to Dan Fox, who is the Baseball Prospectus writer who is most up to speed (ha ha) on the PITCHf/x system, as to which system is more "accurate", or how biases may manifest themselves.

I will say this about PITCHf/x - it is likely much more consistent from park to park, as the systems were set up by the same folks and use the same hardware and software. Thus from game to game, if you're looking for trends in pitch velocity, you have a ready source of comparable data to tap into.

RFK didn't have the system, but other parks did, so I think I'll go look for some of Chad's outings last season, to see how the speed compares. That should give us a good benchmark as to how well he's doing in his return, in terms of velocity.

Posted by: tomterp | April 14, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

On the Lerners' cheapness, it really isn't an issue of naming FA names. If there were no available signees, then the median MLB payroll would be $50MM (which the Nats are paying) rather than $100MM. The only issue is whether the Nats should be betting $50MM, $100MM, or $200MM per year. There is no plausible argument that, after having a $611MM stadium given to them, the Washington, DC market franchise should spend far, far less than the league average -- exceeding the payrolls of only 4 other teams.

Logic aside, the franchise was dishonest with the fans, explicitly telling them during the first two seasons that they would become spenders when this year, with the new stadium up and running.

Posted by: mk | April 14, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

I liked the trade when it was made and I still like it. I said then that Church could outperform Milledge this year, but that Milledge will be better over a period of years. I always liked Schneider, but he is a lousy offensive catcher. Yes he is hitting ok now, but he will finsh below .250 for the year. Guaranteed.

Lo Duca was not part of the trade. He was the best avaialble. He's a 3-6 month stop gap. He's worse defensively than Schneider and I think perhaps worse at calling games (but too early for me to know). He will finish with a better average and probably fewer GiDP.

All in all, a good trade for the Nats. A decent replacement player in Lo Duca. The Nats will be better in 2009 as a result of the trade.

Posted by: NatBisquit | April 14, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

I don't ever recall hearing that the Nats would become big spenders for the new park. We did hear that payroll would increase (which it has by something like 25%) but we were also told that the #1 PLAN was to spend smart and not spend hard. Just ask teams like the dodgers and giants how spending big on free agents and payroll affects playoff chances. Talk to the Yankees about payroll buying a world series. I agree that it would be nice to see some great players streaming into Nationals Park, but there has been nobody who was a free agent over the past 2 years that I would want to have spent on. Also, when you are not a perennial playoff team it becomes hard to bring in free agents. I think that this offseason could show how cheap the learners are. If they go after guys like Furcal and possibly Ben Sheets (although both have their glaring problems) then that would show their desires to compete. If they throw tiny offers at all of their current players and don't bid for anyone new then we may be on to something in terms of cheapness.

Just remember that the Nationals have done nothing that they didn't promise to do. They have increased spending for scouting and the draft, they have made trades to get younger and more talented, they searched high and low (mostly low) for every tiny bit of talent that they could squeeze out. They have found lots of young pitching, pitching, pitching. If this is not Stan's Plan then please inform me of where i am wrong. Also, I am still waiting to hear a decent free agent acquisition which would have made sense (easiest answer so far is Torri Hunter by the way, but our current outfield has more long term upside so where would you put him?)

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Upon further research, PITCHf/x was recording pitches up to 95.2 initial velocity for Chad Cordero on April 30, 2007, in a victory at San Diego that he closed. So it would appear the concerns of Nats front office that Chad has lost velocity, would be legitimate when benchmarked against a year ago.

http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/y2007/gd.html?2007_04_30_wasmlb_sdnmlb_1

Posted by: tomterp | April 14, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Austin Kearns's first 13 games are so far out of line with his career norms that I wonder whether the fellow in right has is a pod person possessing the former line drive, power hitter.

Some one suggested a few posts back that if a 2 or 3 more line drives had dropped in, he'd be hitting .300. Maybe closer to the truth is, if he'd hit line drives at his 2005 - 2007 rate of 20% instead of about 14%, he'd have a 1.5 -2 more hits to be closer to the .275 hitter we expect (42 ABs - 6Ks = 36 balls in play / 36*.06 = 2+ line drives. Per hardball times, normal rate for line drives being hits is 75%).

Honestly, we are pushing around very small numbers at this point. In baseball, rate statistics generally are expressed in tenths of percents. We are only talking about 42 at bats. Unless he is hiding an injury, the power should bounce back. He has been pretty consistently a .350+ OBP, so it is not significant that he is at .396. Again, over 53 plate appearances, that's about 2 - 2.5 more than expected.

His groundballs are up, and more of his flies are infield flies. Just guessing, that looks like he's just pressing. Anyone with a good eye have more of an insight?

THT page: http://tinyurl.com/4lo393

Posted by: PTBNL | April 14, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else feeling glum that there's no game tonight? I guess I have to... I don't know... study or something. :(

Posted by: JennX | April 14, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

I'm not concerned about Kearns because of all the walks. He's clearly seeing the ball better, the hits will come.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 14, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, bummer, i miss baseball... guess i'll just have to watch the wizards game.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 5:28 PM | Report abuse

"I bet if the stats looked better on our end, we wouldn't be saying 'two weeks is not enough.'"

nope, i'd still be saying "two weeks is not enough." i'd just be saying it to the people predicting playoffs instead of to the people predicting 100 losses.

Posted by: 231 | April 14, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

No way! These stats mean everything! 2 weeks is more then enough! It'll be the O's vs the A's for the AL pennant, the Marlins vs the Cards for the NL pennant. The yanks will lose 90 games, the tigers will lose 110 and get the #1 pick next year. Also, spring training stats clearly matter... Pudge is leading the league in homers this year right?

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

"median" payroll is skewed by the existence of the yankees (being $70m higher than #2, the tigers). that difference is is higher than more than 1/3 of the league's payroll (11 teams under $70m).

a $100m payroll would put a team ~10/11 out of 30 teams. i'd say $75-70m would be middle of the pack.

Posted by: 231 | April 14, 2008 5:36 PM | Report abuse

It's early, yes, but we do need a bit of a winning streak. For example, if we take only 2 of 3 going forward, it will take six 3-game series for us to get back to .500. But if we can just rattle off a short 3-game winning streak, it will only take 3 series to get back even.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 5:37 PM | Report abuse

You hit the nail on the proverbial head, VT Nats Fan!

You ever notice that adding "proverbial" instantly changes a statement from cliched to douchey?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 14, 2008 5:37 PM | Report abuse

Hey O's Exec, did you catch the fact that Jason Bergmann posted a message here upon being sent down on Saturday?

Are there any Os blogs that are like this one, where the players (evidently) read and even post once in a blue moon?

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 3:34 PM
__________________________________________

Actually there are atleast 2 that I know of. One is on the Baltimore Sun's website. Roch Kubatko runs a blog on their website called "Roch Around The Clock" and he's mentioned that a few O's have read/commented on his blog before. The other is called "Orioles Hangout." It's a really well-run site that is media credentialed and gives you all types of info on the O's and all their farm teams.

Now, what was your point in bringing it up? Were you trying to insinuate that this blog is top dog because of that? That this blog is better than any O's blog because of that? That supposedly the Nats players are better because they read/comment on blogs and O's don't (even though they have before)?

Personally I think Redskins Insider and Soccer Insider are the 2 best blogs on here. Redskins Insider because, well, it's the Redskins and Soccer Inside because Goff is the top-dog when it comes to soccer info.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 14, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

"No way! These stats mean everything! 2 weeks is more then enough!" Sarcasm duly noted. But, a nine-game losing streak is a problem, whether it's at the beginning, middle or end of the season.

Posted by: Mt. Vernon Nat | April 14, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

"median" payroll is skewed by the existence of the yankees (being $70m higher than #2, the tigers). that difference is is higher than more than 1/3 of the league's payroll (11 teams under $70m).

a $100m payroll would put a team ~10/11 out of 30 teams. i'd say $75-70m would be middle of the pack.

Posted by: 231 | April 14, 2008 5:36 PM
-------------------------------------------

I'm not arguing that that the Learners are spending enough money. I think it would be unacceptable if the team was planning on competing for a playoff spot with a $50 million payroll when they were making far more then that. What I am saying however, is that there's been nowhere smart to spend that money. We are stating to see some in house option for that cash however... I would not be happy if we could not work out extensions for guys like Zimmerman and Milledge. When opportunity knocks on a player, in house or free agent, the nats should be willing to pony up the cash. What I am arguing is that the nationals have not had a glaring opportunity that they haven't taken advantage of and that they have certainly not been deceptive.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

You will get no argument from me there Mt Vernon.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

"Now, what was your point in bringing it up? Were you trying to insinuate that this blog is top dog because of that? That this blog is better than any O's blog because of that? That supposedly the Nats players are better because they read/comment on blogs and O's don't (even though they have before)?"

No, I think he was just trying to talk to you about something you're interested in, because - it turns out - we kinda like you in non-trolling mode. It's a little outside our borders on the blog, but I think there are a lot of parallels that at least two folks here find interesting. And a legitimate outsider view is refreshing and breaks up the group think a bit. Which is why I don't mind 419 or Coverage now that I understand them a bit better.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 14, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

However, the 3 game winning streak to start the season seemed awefully nice at the time. Everything is amplified this early, we just cant let either good or bad go to our heads at this point.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Sigh...

Coverage and 419 I didn't mean to imply that you troll. Just we have different views and other people don't often like yours and I didn't in the past, but have come to appreciate their distinctiveness from my own.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 14, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

I wasn't trying to insinuate anything, I just wanted to know where to find a good O's blog (for example it's interesting to read the Mets blogs to see what they think about their end of the Schneider/Church/Milledge/LoPuca thing). And I thought it was pretty unusual that a player posted on this blog and I wanted to know if we might be entering into a new era with respect to such things.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

tomterp- thanks again! are these figures initial velocity from the hand or at the plate? "here are the initial velocities of each of the five fastballs he threw in walking Yunel Escobar:

1 - 89.2mph
2 - 88.2
3 - slider 78.6
4 - 89.3
5 - 90.2
6 - 89.3"

What was interesting in the article that your cited was: "The highest speed recorded of any pitch as it left the pitcher's hand was the first pitch to Jose Guillen thrown by the Angels' Francisco Rodriguez in the bottom of the ninth inning at Seattle on May 17th: 104.3 miles per hour. That pitch, however, crossed the plate at just 82.0 mph. The fastest pitch to reach the plate was one thrown by Kyle Farnsworth of the Yankees to the Rangers' Victor Diaz on May 3rd, which was clocked at 92.4 mph."

"What is more interesting is to note that the average pitch starts out at 87.6 mph and ends at 78.8 mph, while the average decrease in velocity is 8.8 mph. When averaging the percentage decrease, the average pitch ends up losing 10 percent of its velocity on the way to the plate. The average pitch is released 6.1 feet from the ground, and drops an average of 3.7 feet, so on average, it's losing 60% of its height on the way to the plate."

Baseball Prospectus,May 24, 2007
Schrodinger's Bat

San Diego has the highest air density (clear and cold) of any park, so the pitch slows and drops more there than at a humid place like RFK, because water weighs less than air.

Posted by: flynnie | April 14, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

The Lastings Milledge deal still looks good to me. Both of the players we traded weren't good or part of the future. Why keep them?

Watching the game the other day, LoDuca set up outside and Bergmann hangs the ball right over the plate and they murder the ball. It's hard to say he calls a bad game when the pitchers aren't making pitches. You can't polish a turd.

Posted by: BillyBeane | April 14, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Ummmn, Flynnie, I was right there with you until the "water weighs less than air" part.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 5:59 PM | Report abuse

The Lastings Milledge deal still looks good to me. Both of the players we traded weren't good or part of the future. Why keep them?

Watching the game the other day, LoDuca set up outside and Bergmann hangs the ball right over the plate and they murder the ball. It's hard to say he calls a bad game when the pitchers aren't making pitches. You can't polish a turd.

Posted by: BillyBeane | April 14, 2008 5:58 PM

-----------------------------------------

Haha... I love it!

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 6:02 PM | Report abuse

Hey, liquid oxygen/nitrogen ain't light there bub (though I suspect that the game would be _much_ different played in those conditions)...

Posted by: OldGuy | April 14, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

". . .on those extremely humid days in Atlanta the air may not feel lighter, but it is, since water vapor molecules are lighter than either the nitrogen or oxygen which they replace when the air is humid.
San Diego is at the high end, which seems to affect velocity by more than 13 percent for pitches released at greater than 91 mph, while Texas is a little over eight percent at the same velocity. For a pitch thrown at 95 mph, that translates to a difference of 4.3 mph, or in parlance of pitching coaches, around three feet on a good fastball. As mentioned last week, the results seem fairly consistent with the idea that the air density at these parks differ (and are affected by altitude, humidity, weather systems, and temperature), and that accounts for the way in which the ball is slowed down."

Baseball Prospectus,May 24, 2007
Schrodinger's Bat

Posted by: flynnie | April 14, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

yup, it's a well-documented fact that the baseball travels farther when hit in hot, humid weather. no reason to think it wouldn't go faster when thrown in similar conditions.

Posted by: 231 | April 14, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, two atoms of Oxygen per oxygen molecule weigh more then an atom of Oxygen and two of hydrogen for water. Therefore, at least on a per atom basis water would, in fact, be lighter then air.


p.s. This post was purely for my father to show that the four years I've spent in college have not been completely wasted on beer and sports.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

I wasn't trying to insinuate anything, I just wanted to know where to find a good O's blog (for example it's interesting to read the Mets blogs to see what they think about their end of the Schneider/Church/Milledge/LoPuca thing). And I thought it was pretty unusual that a player posted on this blog and I wanted to know if we might be entering into a new era with respect to such things.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 5:51 PM
__________________________________________

No worries. I'd definitel check out Orioles Hangout and Roch Around the Clock. The only bad thing about Roch's blog is that you have to submit your comment to him than he approves it and posts it on his blog (nevermind the irony of newspaper reporters possibly restricting free-speech) and a lot of the time that makes it hard to actually have a conversation with someone.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 14, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

The FA market was indeed bad this winter, though nobody talks about the one guy we really should have considered signing. Torii Hunter. Great clubhouse guy, cornerstone in centerfield, good defensively, good offensively. And would have been a great fit in this city and with the plans to better integrate the team into the DC Urban culture.

Imagine an OF and a lineup with Milledge, Hunter and Pena instead of including Kearns or Harris. (who i maintain is waaaaay overrated, has been since he got here, and needs to go). $14M/year is what he got.

Pitching; its arguable whether we should have gambled on Lohse or Livan or Shawn Chacon or any of a dozen veteran guys with no more than 5th starter possibilities instead of sticking with younger guys like Chico, Bergmann, Lannan, etc.

What would you rather see? $2-3M retreads or younger guys who can put the same numbers up and get paid MLB minimums?

Here was the real FA needs of the team going into last season and what they did:

x Power hitting OF: got two prospects in Lastings Millege, Elijah Dukes
x Lefty Specialist: resigned Ray King (also could have been Mike Bascik)
x 2 Backup middle infielders: Aaron Boone, Willie Harris
x Utility player/Pinch Hitter: Rob Mackowiak, though he looks like he might be a total waste.
x Veteran Catcher (Paul Lo Duca and Estrada)
x Starting Pitcher (Odalis Perez)

the only thing they didn't really address was a middle infielder/leadoff hitter type. If Harris was better, he may fit the bill. But he's not. And he doesn't. There wasn't a Jimmy Rollins or Jose Reyes magic bullet at SS out there. So I'll bet we focus on drafting middle infielders to prepare for Lopez/Guzman/Belliard departures in the next 2 offseasons and go on.

Everyone is just being impatient (myself included, sometimes).

Posted by: Sec131 | April 14, 2008 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Useful, tomterp, useful!

"First, as a general rule, pitchers are probably not taken out of games primarily because of their loss in velocity, but instead because of their loss of command."

"One might think that perhaps one of the ways that tiring would manifest itself is in mechanics that appear to result in the same arm speed and hence release velocity, but actually result in decreased velocity as the pitch nears the plate. This isn't the case, and the 10 percent rule always applies."

Baseball Prospectus,May 24, 2007
Schrodinger's Bat

Posted by: flynnie | April 14, 2008 6:15 PM | Report abuse

"though nobody talks about the one guy we really should have considered signing. Torii Hunter."

oh... trust me, 131, his name came up quite a bit. not as much recently, but there were definitely people here who wanted to sign him.

i wasn't one of them, since he'd be in a much more serious decline in 2010/2011 when this team hopes to compete. i'd rather see them make that kind of signing the next two offseasons instead of last offseason.

Posted by: 231 | April 14, 2008 6:27 PM | Report abuse

I did mention him about 20 points ago...

"easiest answer so far is Torri Hunter by the way, but our current outfield has more long term upside so where would you put him?"

And as mentioned above I would take Kearns out, I like him but I dont love him and I think he's a mediocre (with the bat) 3rd outfielder or a decent 4th outfielder at best. Along the lines of one ryan church.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 6:31 PM | Report abuse

Again, if it made no sese to spend average dollars to sign "retreads," and the only thing worth doing were to accumulate prospects, then the Nationals would be spending an average amount, rather than more than only 4 other clubs. As for the notion that payroll has increased by 25%, this is so only because payroll was slashed last season (by about 33%). The payroll this season -- the inaugural season for the new stadium -- is less than the 2005 payroll. That makes no sense. This is not a small market, and yet the team is being run like a small market team -- spending less, for example, than Kansas City. In truth, the team should be spending more than the MLB average -- particularly at this critical stage of its fanbase development. But if it were even spending the average, and still losing, at least it would be able to show that it was making a credible investment. At least it wouldn't be charging $7 for a slice of pizza and trotting out a quad-A team while pretending that it is burdened with the economics that affect the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Posted by: mk | April 14, 2008 6:31 PM | Report abuse

WHOOOOOOOOO???? Who are we spending this money on? I would rather be ripped off by a $7 slice of pizza then an $8 million outfielder hitting .250... If you'd rather suck with an expensive team then with a cheap team just to be able to say you've spent money then you should try driving up 95.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Also, if you sign expensive guys then there is pressure to play them instead of giving playing time to some of the prospects. If we'd gone out and signed a veteran backup catcher last season then Flores would still be a met. We have no blocked prospects because nobody is there to block them. That is a good thing for a team who isn't going to win 80 games no matter what they spend in a terrible free agent class. Would you really rather have Barry Zito at 20 mil per year for 7 years then Odalis Perez at under a mil for this year only... they have been performing at pretty much the same level.

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 6:40 PM | Report abuse

"We have no blocked prospects because nobody is there to block them. That is a good thing for a team who isn't going to win 80 games no matter what they spend in a terrible free agent class."

You are wise, VT Nats Fan, plus you know your physics and your dad must be prous of you!

Posted by: flynnie | April 14, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else see this today in Bill Ladson's Mailbag?? I guess he isn't a regular around here...

-----
Did Johnson lose a bet to someone in the clubhouse? How else do you explain his alleged "haircut?" It looks like it was done by a drunken sailor.
-- Chris B. Arlington, Va.

I don't have a problem with the haircut. Growing up in New York, the haircut reminded me of some of the haircuts John Riggins use to have with the Jets. Johnson looks good.

Posted by: Greg | April 14, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Proud, not prous!

Posted by: flynnie | April 14, 2008 6:47 PM | Report abuse

Thanks flynnie, glad to hear that someone doesn't think that i'm just spouting (as i tend to do from time to time)

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | April 14, 2008 6:48 PM | Report abuse

I think the trade was fine. I think the problem comes with Lo Duca as the replacement for Brian. What a difference!

Long turn problem for this outfield as I see it is STIL NO CFer for the future. Millidge will never be able to provide the defense that winning teams have in CF. Tori Hunter, Beltran, Rowland, Jones, all were hitters and great defenders......Lastings is not even passable now and with years of learning on the job he would still be a defensive liability to a team that wants to win a pennant. Nats must know that by now.....hope they are looking hard for the CFer we will need to win.

Posted by: JayB | April 14, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

Free agents like Tori Hunter -- his ability and his age -- don't go to teams that have no legit shot at post-season success. They go to winners. Whatever he said about DC's culture was lip service/leverage.

Players learned from ARod's Rangers' debacle.

Posted by: natsfan | April 14, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

It amazes me to hear all the blathering about the Lerners being cheap. Trading for Lastings was a smart move for the long term. I see things in him that are wonderful, then I see things that remind me he is a rookie (basically). With the young players we have (such as Zimmerman and Milledge), the yearly salaries are bound to be lower than those with bigger names.
The FA market had very little worth taking this year. Torii Hunter was about the only one remotely worth looking at and I don't think he really considered coming here (people need to remember Free Agency is a two way street: the owners go after a FA and the FA has to WANT to be here), being the Nats are rebuilding.
Zimmerman is under the Nats control for the next year. The fact that they signed him for 450K, doesn't make them cheap. It is what the rules of the collective bargining agreement call for. Could they have signed him long term? Yes, but you need to remember that Zimmerman and his agent play a role in that. After this year, Zimmerman is eligible for arbitration. Given the recent trends (look at Ryan Howard in Philly and his recent 11 million arbitration award), signing an extension made no sense for Zim either.
I have said it before, but will say it again (echoing others): If the Lerners allow Zimmerman and others (Milledge etc.) to walk instead of ponying up for the big contract, I will then call them out on their cheapness. But to call them cheap for not getting marginal talent at silly inflated prices, is just unfair.

Posted by: TimDz | April 14, 2008 6:53 PM | Report abuse

VT nats fan --

There's no point in people naming FA names and getting into a moneyball debate -- eg, whether a major league team should prefer to have Odalis Perez on its staff than Barry Zito. Moreover, don't assume that the list of names would be limited to last offseason's class. This issue goes back to to the moment the Lerners acquired the franchise.

All that is relevant is that the Lerners have assembled a team that is in the bottom 5 in payroll (down from about the bottom 10 in 2005). I will repeat the same, unassailable point to which I have heard no response: if there truly has been "nobody out there worth signing" throughout the Lerners' tenure, then the market for major league players is wrong, and Washington's $50MM payroll should BE the league average. Let me put it differently. Any franchise will have a greater chance of winning more games if it is allowed to spend $100MM than if it is forced to spend only $50MM in payroll. It is up to the team to determine where to place its bets, some of which will pay off and some of which will not. In a sport with no salary cap, the only justification for spending in the bottom five is an economic inability to spend more. If that justification existed in Washington, MLB should not have brought a team here. (It does not exist in Washington.)

Anyone will always be able to point to free agent busts, and teams will always be able to avoid any such busts by not spending. But that does not mean that, if every team were given $100MM in monopoly money, ANY team would spend only $50MM. The converse is true -- every team would spend the max. And the owner of the Washington franchise has an obligation to the fans -- many of whom helped pay for his new stadium -- to spend at least the league average, and certainly to refrain from systematically reducing payroll until only four teams are spending less than Washington (just as the new stadium opens). If doing so doesn't result in appreciably more wins, then in all likelihood he needs to fire some people, although injuries and unforseeable, bad luck will always happen. But he has an obligation to spend more than Kansas City -- not just last offseason (when the FA market was thin), but in the prior two offseasons.

As for proven major league players blocking prospects, that's why we have minor leagues. What you are essentially arguing for is quad-A baseball, which is what franchises like the Royals have had for years. This is not a small market that needs to develop its prospects in major league games.

Posted by: mk | April 14, 2008 7:01 PM | Report abuse

As for LoDuca, he is a one year stop gap to allow Flores to develop (and he will be doing so with pitchers that should be coming up in the next few years).
Would a nice, seasoned #1 pitcher through free agency or a trade be nice for next year? Sure it would. It also depends on who is out there after the season. If you trade for a #1, you will have to pay the price. Do you want to give up on Smoker, McGeary or Detwiler to get that? That's what it will cost.

Posted by: TimDz | April 14, 2008 7:05 PM | Report abuse

mk: interesting points, but I don't think all are necessarily accurate. You are basically saying that "You have money, so SPEND IT NOW!!!" Spending just for the sake of spending may look good in the eyes of some, but I am sure you would agree that the focus here should be results (division titles, WS appearances WS titles). Spending $100 million in salaries does not guarantee any of those. I for one would like to see a team that competes for a title year in and year out. To do that, you not only need to have the money, but the pieces as well...that means a good farm system. The Nationals are doing just that. Their farm system, plus the ability to spend will enable them to make off season signings and trade deadline deals that will result in a competitive team. If the Lerners build up the farm system and don't use it to their advantage, we as fans will have the right to gripe.
As to the stadium, the fans paid nothing for the stadium. The money came from taxes on the big businesses in DC. It really gets old seeing people b*tch and moan about the stadium costs...

Posted by: TimDz | April 14, 2008 7:20 PM | Report abuse

"if there truly has been "nobody out there worth signing" throughout the Lerners' tenure, then the market for major league players is wrong, and Washington's $50MM payroll should BE the league average. Let me put it differently."

you're basing that on the comment that the *2007/08* offseason didn't have anyone worth signing, which isn't really the whole story. those average payrolls are based on a number of factors, of which this past offseason's crop of FAs is only one factor (not to mention you didn't take into account my earlier comment about the yanks skewing the median and a truer average would be 75-80, not 100).

most of those teams that have high payrolls have them because they've signed their own players to hefty long-term contracts. we only have one young player in that situation, and he only just got to the point where you seriously consider it. same with arbitration, we have no big-time stars in arbitration (until next year, when zimmerman hits that level).

most of those teams signed FA players to big contracts in earlier FA offseasons than this past winter, some as many as 5 years ago. anything longer ago than the past two offseasons isn't relevant when comparing what the lerners did for payroll in the past 20 months since taking over the team. other than resigning arod, how much did the yankees spend on FAs last year? boston? the trend is shifting and the smart teams shift with it. how much did SF spend in the last two offseasons? has it done them any good to spend a fortune on rowand and zito?

pointing to specific bad moves in that 20 months is completely fair game, and we'll have lots of debate on which were good or weren't. same with those they *might* have signed. but using an arbitrary payroll number at this point is foolish, imo. judge them on the actual moves (or lack thereof), not on some number you think they should have reached.

if you have young players with good upside signed at less than $1m, i don't see the point in spending $10m or more on a different player at that same position, especially if you're not ready to contend immediately. that's just not very smart.

if there are holes in a non-contending team, you first try to fill them with young talent with potential and build up a base of talented young players. if you just try to fill them all with expensive aging veterans, you end up with the yankees of the late 80s/early 90s. note that the yankees didn't start topping payroll in their current run until *after* their young guys were making it happen. and they weren't successful until they built from within first. not saying they didn't spend much, but, believe it or not, the Os spent more money in 1998 (or w/in a year either way, i'm going from memory) than the yankees did.

Posted by: 231 | April 14, 2008 7:24 PM | Report abuse

timdz, to be fair, the fans *are* paying for the stadium. the bonds were funded by taxes on things like tickets and concessions (among other things).

Posted by: 231 | April 14, 2008 7:25 PM | Report abuse

231: We can agree to disagree on this one; my understanding was that the bonds were funded by a tax on the businesses that did over X amount of business/sales in DC (I put X because I don't know what that amount was). Taxes on tickets and concessions have nothing to do with the funding (as far as I have understood).

Posted by: TimDz | April 14, 2008 7:29 PM | Report abuse

I'm pretty sure TimDz's right on the taxation issue. In a sense, the stadium is a backdoor commuter tax -- large businesses (the ones that employ carpetbaggers like me) pay taxes; small businesses that employ primarily D.C. residents do not. Meanwhile, taxes on tix and sales at the stadium are levied only on those of us who use the services, not the popluation generally. (Ratepayers vs. taxpayers, to use the terminology.) The park is a pretty good deal for the District, allowing it to get tax revenue from out-of-towners without having to pony up residents' income to do it. The District should be able to do this with a commuter tax, but unfortunately that won't happen as long as its woeful lack of representation in Congress continues.

Posted by: Cliffy | April 14, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

per a washington times article (just a quick google, there's probably something more in-depth out there):

"The stadium is being funded largely by D.C. bonds backed by a ballpark fee on many businesses, taxes on concessions and tickets, a utility tax and an annual rent payment from the team."

i wasn't necessarily trying to say that it was *only* taxes on concessions/tickets, only that the bonds are at least partially funded by the fans buying tickets/concessions.

Posted by: 231 | April 14, 2008 8:07 PM | Report abuse

In regards to the Lerners are cheap thread... I really think it's a year too soon to be saying that. They're business people, and they would be fools to fully commit themselves before they understood what they owned. Boz said it in his chat the other week, that the Lerner's put $50 million of their own money into the stadium. That was where they were focused. That and the farm. Now that the stadium is in place, they will better be able to project their financial position going forward and I would expect to see player payroll expand in the coming years.

Posted by: BofG | April 14, 2008 8:08 PM | Report abuse

mk, one serious problem with your argument is the assumption that the majority of MLB owners are either motivated to win (clearly not all, any more than the Lerners are in your formulation), or else they are rational and competent, which is a seriously flawed proposition.

Try it this way: what did the WINNING teams (let that be our definition of "well run") spend, and where do the Nats fit in there?

Posted by: CE | April 14, 2008 8:15 PM | Report abuse

and that's not even getting into "payroll as a percentage of available income"

Posted by: CE | April 14, 2008 8:21 PM | Report abuse

"the franchise was dishonest with the fans"

breaking news: businessmen hype product, fail to deliver! in other news, sky blue, sun hot.

Posted by: natty bumppo | April 14, 2008 8:40 PM | Report abuse

Ahah, now water VAPOR being lighter than air, that I get. I will admit, though, that I did not know (or maybe I once knew and forgot) that water is lighter than air on a "per atom" basis. Who knows, next thing y'all will be convincing me that Dmitri Young is lighter than a very hungry caterpillar on a "per ate-em" basis.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Good one, Bobble! Here's to Dmitri, healthy and happy and hitting the ball through the light summer air!

Posted by: flynnie | April 14, 2008 9:16 PM | Report abuse

"The only bad thing about Roch's blog is that you have to submit your comment to him than he approves it and posts it on his blog"

Yeah, O's Exec, it probably keeps out the trolling, though....

I took a look at those blogs and I agree that they're pretty good. Anyone interested in O's as well or who just want to check out another team (whose fans aren't that different than us) should give them a peek.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 14, 2008 9:20 PM | Report abuse

thrilledge for church/schnider was a no brainer. unlimited potential for a decent outfielder and a future coach catcher. signing paul lo duca was a huge mistake. he is a team killer and has the exact opposite attitude we need. johny estrada is perfectly capable and i think by the all star break he will be on top the depth chart.

DROP FLOP AND PLOD

Posted by: love | April 14, 2008 9:31 PM | Report abuse

I think everyone in the bullpen should be generically referred to as "Shaky Strength" until further notice.

As in, "Now pitching for the Nationals, batting ninth, number 49, Shaky Strength."

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

For those considering the Nats cheap, I have a question. At what point have the Nationals generated revenue from their grandiose stadium?

Obviously season ticket holders have paid up (or should have). But what about advertising revenue? Is it a lump sum paid prior to the season start? What about MASN revenue or payouts from the MLB advertising/general fund? When do the Nats benefit from MLB's website and Ladson's wisdom? How about revenue sharing? The Nats portion of new stadium concessions? When will this revenue hit?

I understand the Nats have a favorable lease with D.C. regarding concessions, catering and stadium advertising among many terms. I understand a new stadium should be a financial boom. But have the Lerners already pocketed this cash?

I ask this as it appears the Lerners are soaking in hot tubs full of $100's at the expense of the good people from the District of Columbia.

I don't know the answers. The "Lerners Are Cheap" group seem to have all the answers. Please give some to me.

Posted by: Los Doce Ocho | April 14, 2008 9:41 PM | Report abuse

What were Church's stats this time last year? If memory serves me he started out strong and then had a wretched May.

Posted by: lowcountry | April 14, 2008 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Did you recommend that the fans on the O's blogs come on down and try some of our delicious Ben's chili, Sect. 506?

Posted by: Nats Exec | April 14, 2008 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Still a good trade. Schneider made too much for little Offense, and had too long of a contract with Flores in the wings. Church never got a fair shake here but needed a change of scenery. Milledge is young and will be here a while.

OT: I'm concerned and interested about the whole AAA reshuffling after this year...

First the facts...
1. Everyone knows the Braves are moving Richmond's AAA Franchise closer to ATL in Gwinett.
2. Cleveland is currently not renewing Buffalo, it is rumored that they want their AAA team in Columbus.
3. Toronto is currently not renewing Syracuse.
4. this is the last year of the contract between Washington and Columbus. Columbus gets a new stadium next year.
5. Mets are unhappy with being in New Orleans and want to move to Syracuse.
6. Because the AAA Franchise is leaving Richmond, a different AAA would have to fold and move to Richmond if Richmond was to have a team

This is how it will probably go.
1. Cleveland's AAA moves from Buffalo to Columbus. this just makes sense. Columbus is more affluent of a town, there in the state of Ohio and there is a new ballpark.

2. Mets moves AAA franchise from New Orleans to Syracuse. This makes sense for them as well... While Syracuse isn't that close to NYC, anything is better than New Orleans.

3. Toronto PROBABLY moves to Buffalo... this makes sense for them as Buffalo is only 1 hour away from Buffalo. Many of the canadian TV stations are on Buffalo Cable and I used to watch the Jays on CTV growing up, before Rogers cable bought them. However, Buffalo is apprehensive about this. First the beverage laden Hockey Leafs fans and Buffalo Fans get along about as well as Cowboy-Redskin fans. To make matters worse the Buffalo Bills are playing 2 games (1 exhibition, 1 regular season game) in Toronto, which isn't going over well in Buffalo.

4. This leaves the Nationals with the choice of New Orleans (which was there affiliate two years ago) or moving a franchise to Richmond which is only 1 hour and 30 minutes away. The trick is that Richmond has a dumpy stadium and little support, although I'm not really sure how it compares with New Orleans. Maybe the Nats make a move to go to Buffalo... which has a good stadium and is still a lot of fun to go to when the weather is warmer.

Does anyone else care about the nats AAA franchise? can you provide any insight into the Richmond situation? Go NATS!


Posted by: NatsFan | April 14, 2008 10:43 PM | Report abuse

Their's no "they're" there.

Posted by: I no won thing | April 14, 2008 11:01 PM | Report abuse

Good point, Nats Exec. I think that we need to do that. But not as trolls.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | April 14, 2008 11:15 PM | Report abuse

"I don't know the answers. The "Lerners Are Cheap" group seem to have all the answers. Please give some to me."

They don't have any more answers than anybody else does. They have no insight at all into the Lerners' revenue stream, and the only insight into their expenses is the MLB salary number which is public knowledge. But of course there are other expenses involved in running an MLB team that they know nothing about.

So all the "Lerners are cheap" crowd are doing is looking at the payroll number, saying it's not high enough and therefore the Lerners are cheap for not spending more money. But you know what? Talk is cheap, and so are the shots at the Lerners from this crowd. The Lerners are doing EXACTLY what they said they would do when they bought the team, even though Stan Kasten warned them that people would say they were cheap. Their so-called Plan calls for expenditures on free agents later on when it makes sense to spend the money, and there is absolutely no reason to think they won't do what they have said they will when that time comes.

The Lerners aren't cheap, but the "Lerners are cheap" crowd is clueless. There's no doubt about that.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 14, 2008 11:18 PM | Report abuse

amen...we dont wanna turn into the marlins. granted they have won 2 world series, but the franchise is in terrible shape as is the fan base, in danger of being relocated methinks. i would rather wait a couple more years for traditional success to make sure the franchise is built correctly, than bet the farm (literally and figuratively) on one or two high priced, over paid players. keep being smart and rational, it will pay off front office!!

Posted by: love | April 15, 2008 1:04 AM | Report abuse

Are the Pat's cheesesteaks at the park the real deal? Pat's Pizzaria is the formal name of Pat's as in Pat's v Geno's, and they are at NatsPark. Also, can a real Chicago dog be had? A real Vienna Beef Chicago Dog? Damn these diet suppers. I awaken ready to let the beast off the chain. Love-If the caps win tomorrow, will you ease up on Felipe? Your Felipe hatin' has cursed the Caps! Turn back, before it's too late!

Posted by: flynnie | April 15, 2008 1:58 AM | Report abuse

And Traveler, if you read this, it was so nice to hear from you again, and thanks for the poetry props! The Pope is coming to Bless the Nats season, and he just published an encyclical in which he said, "People who have hope live differently." This community here at PlanentNJ seem to be divided into those who cherish hopes of summer days and elegant plays and beauty at the ballpark. Then there are them that know not the sweetness of the game, and come here to vent their spleens. And there are the high priests of sabremetrics, who enrich us with their statistical truths. NatsJournal is a fun place to be, especially when the 28 days tribe aren't serving up a big vat of haterade.

Posted by: flynnie | April 15, 2008 2:12 AM | Report abuse

Glad to see Barry cover the attendance issue. But once again, the Post ducks the obvious reason -- the owners are cheap. If the Lerners won't spend money on the team, why should the fans be expected to spend money on the team?

Why does the Post choose to ignore this angle over and over again? (It didn't even cover the story of the Lerners asking the taxpayers of DC to pay for the players' uniforms.)

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 4:21 AM | Report abuse

No time to read all the posts before I head to work.

I was pumped up for the Milledge trade, and I still am. I think we have seen what Church can do, and that was pretty good in RFK last year. I would say he could improve on his numbers in Shea, but I think he will wilt under NY pressure eventually. He'll be fine, but I don't believe that he is what the Mets want as a starting left fielder.

It made sense to trade Schneider, and still does. The intention is clearly for Flores to take the starting job next year, and whoever played ahead of him was only going to be the starter in 2008. When Schneider could be included in a trade for a player our front office coveted, it was an easy choice.

LoDuca is a stop gap. There were not better free agent catchers available, or the Mets would not have traded for Schneider in the first place. LoDuca brings attitude, and hopefully he will bring better offense. Since he won't be here next year, don't fret if you just can't warm to him.

Posted by: Positively Half St. | April 15, 2008 5:08 AM | Report abuse

I can't even imagine that we're discussing the Milledge trade. As many of you have said or suggested, it was a no brainer. And, even you, 231, would have to admit you would have said, before the trade, the Nats would have had a snow balls chance... of getting that deal. I referred to you, 231, because you're rather prudent when people suggest certain trades the Nats could make for other team's prospects.
And heck, despite some questionable fielding, he is already doing terrifically.
As for Church and Schneider, I truly wish them the best.

Posted by: Jeeves | April 15, 2008 6:29 AM | Report abuse

Obviously the big mis-match is the Lo Duca/Schneider part. We got the bum end of that deal. I'm happy with Milledge. I think Lastings will be Ok, and was happy to see Church go.

Next year we get Flores back. Learn quick buddy, we miss you! GO NATIONALS!!!!

Posted by: Gaithersburg Pete | April 15, 2008 6:41 AM | Report abuse

agreed, jeeves. i was pretty surprised when i saw that deal (along with a lot of baseball people).

Posted by: 231 | April 15, 2008 7:02 AM | Report abuse

"It didn't even cover the story of the Lerners asking the taxpayers of DC to pay for the players' uniforms."

swanni, you need to cite one (or preferably several) credible references for this if you're going to continue bringing it up. Why didn't the Post cover the story? Because it's an urban legend. Why didn't ANYONE cover the story? Because it's an urban legend. It never happened, unless and until you can cite credible references to show it did. You have Google, LexisNexis, and God only knows how many other tools at your disposal to dig up references for this story, yet all you ever say is "Why isn't the Post covering it?" Why can't you cite a source where it WAS covered? Because it never happened.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 15, 2008 7:37 AM | Report abuse

"The Lerners aren't cheap, but the "Lerners are cheap" crowd is clueless. There's no doubt about that."

Thanks for posting, Ted, come back any time and don't forget to use your signature next time!

Flynnie, you make me laugh out loud at least once a day, thanks, buddy. Do you bleed sunshine? It's appreciated, thanks for the message of hope.

Interesting post on AAA, NatsFan. I'm afraid I have nothing to add, but if you get any more of the story, I don't mind hearing.

And I still insist that Lo Duca has nothing to do with Schneider. Like I said in the last thread, we traded a Rushed Flores of 2010 (when the Nationals "chickens... have come home to roost!" to liberally paraphrase a certain pastor) for Paul Lo Duca. And it probably was a good trade, according to most baseball experts.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 15, 2008 7:43 AM | Report abuse

"It never happened, unless and until you can cite credible references to show it did."

That's not really true, Ted, but we know your answer to the tree falling in the forest question now! Also, please sign your signature, especially when you want to blast one of our long time contributors, however cantankerous. There's no tenure around here, but folks with a long track record do deserve to know who is gunning for him or her.

New posters also deserve to know who is targeting them, so sign those posts too. Same with medium posters. So, you can keep not signing posts directed to any poster who is not new, long-time, or middle-blog-aged. Everyone else, please add a signature.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 15, 2008 7:49 AM | Report abuse

On similar note, in light of Lo Duca's recent comments to the effect that a squirrel could have played better than the Nats did during their losing streak, I hereby move that a rooting section called "The Squirrel's Nest" be established in the Loft area of the park. :-)

---

I think everyone in the bullpen should be generically referred to as "Shaky Strength" until further notice.

Posted by: natsfan1a | April 15, 2008 8:01 AM | Report abuse

...or maybe it should be "The Squirrels' Nest." Anyway, you get the idea. ;)

Posted by: natsfan1a | April 15, 2008 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Posted by:
Happy now?

"Early on in the negotiations, the team had asked the city to pay for team uniforms as part of the fixtures of the stadium. That request never reached the final arbitration process, but an another uniform request did. The Nationals unsuccessfully argued that D.C. should pay for the uniforms for the stadium security guards."
http://www.wtop.com/?nid=428&sid=1353394

WTOP aired this story in February. Even the Post finally noted it in paragraph 68 of an otherwise laudatory story about the Lerners in late March.

But it's remarkable that a big-city newspaper like the Post didn't make this a front page story. I've never heard of a team asking city taxpayers to pay for its team uniforms.

There's only one explanation: The Lerners are cheap -- and the Post has decided not to pursue that angle.

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 8:09 AM | Report abuse

More Marketing Genius, Free of Charge:

Rally Squirrels!

With lightsabers!

Posted by: MIB ideas | April 15, 2008 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Swanni, editorially speaking: What???? Front page?!??


There's a war on, yanno. Or ain't you hoid?

Posted by: CE | April 15, 2008 8:13 AM | Report abuse

The attendance article is leaving out a HUGE factor when comparing ball clubs opening new parks. The Reds, Tigers, Orioles, and Indians, all had over 100 years of history in the same town with a generational fan base. I am a child of the '60s. I grew up with the new Senators who we still called the Nats. My older brothers would give me the business about my Nats not being the "real" Nats since their "Nats" left town in '60. DC, except for us old timers, are confused. There are guys who are just a few years younger than I who only knew the O's growing up. I, on the other hand, went to Memorial and Camden Yards more for the party rather than love for the O's. What we need is a fan base builder. That comes with cheap seats or with a playoff winner on the field. Since we are years away from "loving" the Nats to the core - as in taht love is part of our DNA - I recommend we go with the cheap seats.

Posted by: 6th and D | April 15, 2008 8:14 AM | Report abuse

The front page is not the exclusive home of national and international issues.

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 8:15 AM | Report abuse

Here's a thought: can we stipulate that the fans here suck, the team sucks, the owners suck, the parking sucks, Metro sucks, trolls suck, everyone who used to play here sucks except the ones we should have re-signed for more money, and The Post sucks, and then just move the [AB] on?

I am so [AB]ing tired of the same [AB]ing post every [AB]ing day. If anyone were listening, it would have changed by now! No one is. Find a new bone to chew, willya please?

Posted by: Anonymously. Oh what the heck. CE | April 15, 2008 8:20 AM | Report abuse

I want Flores back this year. LoDuca is 0 for 5 against base stealers.

Posted by: 6th and D | April 15, 2008 8:23 AM | Report abuse

I vote for naming the $10 'cheap seats' section 'Ted Town' -- in honor of Mr. Lerner.

The entire area could be a tribute to Ted -- fans could make contributions to pay for Ronnie Belliard's bats and Nats' team uniforms; get concessions at 1930s era prices; shoot paintballs at lifesize cardboard replicas of expensive free agents like Tori Hunter; deny small children the opportunity to get a Nats bobble head; listen to a tape recording of Jim Bowden telling you how brilliant you are.

Posted by: lernersarecheap | April 15, 2008 8:23 AM | Report abuse

I wasn't saying it is, I'm questioning your editorial judgement.
*****
The front page is not the exclusive home of national and international issues.

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 8:15 AM

Posted by: CE | April 15, 2008 8:23 AM | Report abuse

CE,
Every newspaper in the land puts human interest stories -- and unusual angles -- on the front page now.

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 8:24 AM | Report abuse

and then, having said all that, this is funny.

*******
I vote for naming the $10 'cheap seats' section 'Ted Town' -- in honor of Mr. Lerner.

The entire area could be a tribute to Ted -- fans could make contributions to pay for Ronnie Belliard's bats and Nats' team uniforms; get concessions at 1930s era prices; shoot paintballs at lifesize cardboard replicas of expensive free agents like Tori Hunter; deny small children the opportunity to get a Nats bobble head; listen to a tape recording of Jim Bowden telling you how brilliant you are.

Posted by: lernersarecheap | April 15, 2008 8:23 AM

Posted by: CE | April 15, 2008 8:25 AM | Report abuse

Yes. Again, I'm not saying that, I'm saying there's no story there. It's a page 30 tidbit.

******
CE, Every newspaper in the land puts human interest stories -- and unusual angles -- on the front page now.

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 8:24 AM

Posted by: CE | April 15, 2008 8:26 AM | Report abuse

I'm going to work now.

Posted by: CE | April 15, 2008 8:28 AM | Report abuse

MIB, I am totally on board with the rally squirrels. :)

Posted by: natsfan1a | April 15, 2008 8:30 AM | Report abuse

It's a story about a new team fighting with the city council over something that's never been debated before -- who pays for the team's uniforms.

Should Minnie Jones of SE Washington have to pay for Ryan Zimmerman's hat? Should Bobby Joe Johnson of NE have to pay for Nick Johnson's stirrups? Or Chad Cordero's jockstrap?

If that story doesn't generate buzz at the water cooler, I don't know what would.

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 8:30 AM | Report abuse

"Why didn't the Post cover the story? Because it's an urban legend. Why didn't ANYONE cover the story? Because it's an urban legend. It never happened, unless and until you can cite credible references to show it did."

The Post did mention the story, much later than the Times and with less depth, but the link below confirms that Lerner took the city to arbitration to try to force DC to pay for team uniforms:

"The Lerners have also caused bruised feelings by pushing arbitration on smaller costs. At one point, the family tried to get the District to pay for the team's uniforms."

www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/03/27/AR2008032703867_pf.html

Let it definitively be stated that the Lerner's are cheap.

Posted by: (419 + 1) * 0 | April 15, 2008 8:31 AM | Report abuse

Agreed!

Posted by: lernersarecheap | April 15, 2008 8:32 AM | Report abuse

The Lerners love their little Dream Foundation where they say they are giving back to the community. But at the same time, they tried to force the community's taxpayers to pay for their team's uniforms.

Oh, and that's not a front page story?

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Those underprivileged DC kids that the Lerners say they care so much about might have more money for their school lunch programs if cheap billionaires like the Lerners didn't try to rob their city's coffers with unreasonable demands.

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 8:39 AM | Report abuse

Well, if it is Schneider for LoDuca and Church for Milledge, I hate it on whole.

But it isn't.

[long explanation elided]

In the end I think it is a good trade and a bad FA signing.

Good luck to Brian and Ryan (although I hope the Mets end up 4th in the division). I'd love the Nats to leave Paulie and his emotions up in NY after this week's series, and just have Flores do the catching with Estrada to back him up.

Note that this represents a dramatic departure from my original attitude on all of these deals.

Posted by: i hate walks | April 15, 2008 8:50 AM | Report abuse

on the off-topic chatter:

The uniforms the Lerners were trying to get included with the stadium were the uniforms of the security guards who are part and parcel of the stadium staff, regardless of what event is going on inside. Ya gotta follow the story, not just read the early-breaking stuff to see what's going on.

The cheap seats are $5 -- not $10, moneybags.

The rally squirrels thing is a total non sequitur and as such I love it, but it will never catch on.

The Nationals Park pitch speed sign seems really slow to me, too.

Of the 8,000 places to stand while you wait for a break in the action before returning to your seat, there are about five from which you can see the scoreboard AND stay out of the rain. There are three with an accessible power outlet in case you wanted to, say, charge your laptop. ;)

Posted by: i hate walks | April 15, 2008 9:02 AM | Report abuse

That's what they said about Pasteur!
**********
The rally squirrels thing is a total non sequitur and as such I love it, but it will never catch on.

Posted by: MIB | April 15, 2008 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Logic aside, the franchise was dishonest with the fans, explicitly telling them during the first two seasons that they would become spenders when this year, with the new stadium up and running.

I'll send you $10 American if you can back that up with a published statement from the team.

Posted by: Arkymark | April 15, 2008 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Is [AB] the new [RF]? I know that [RF] came from Robert Fick's colorful vocabulary - what does [AB] come from?

Everything I hear about Richmond is that the stadium is awful, and that that is why the Atlanta affiliate moved - and no one is likely to want to move in. However, I would like to know more - Barry, are the Nats looking into this opportunity at all?

Posted by: Traveler | April 15, 2008 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Great Screech on a Stick! swanni writes for the Independent and CE for the Times (of London). There are different journalistic philosophies, for goodness sake, you are both right on what should be covered and where it should be covered. The Post tends to lean on the national paper side, sometimes at the expense of its local community, so that's your answer of why they covered it the way they did. Swanni, I know that you get your information from multiple media sources, that's a great idea for precisely the reasons you've just illustrated. Please do cite these things you read, because I always appreciate learning new articles.

Ted Town was one of the funniest things I've read for awhile.

CE, thanks for owning up, I think you're not alone in your sentiments, so there's no reason to have to go anon.

Finally, 419, if you're posting in parentheses it still doesn't count as being in exile. Just come back full time.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | April 15, 2008 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Oh yeah, LOVE the rally squirrels!

Posted by: Traveler | April 15, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

"It's a story about a new team fighting with the city council over something that's never been debated before -- who pays for the team's uniforms."

No it's not. It's a non-story. You've cited one line by a non-bylined person at wtop.com that says "Early on in the negotiations, the team had asked the city to pay for team uniforms as part of the fixtures of the stadium." Who on the team asked who at the city? We're not told. We can't even ask your wtop.com source to tell us, because we don't even know who the wtop.com source is!

But wait, there's more. "That request never reached the final arbitration process." Oh, gee, I wonder why? We'll never know for sure, because we don't know the sources, but here's a guess. Some low-level minion on the team staff made a comment along those lines, perhaps even in jest, to some low-level city council staffer. Your un-named source probably overheard it and in blatant disregard of any semblance of professional journalism repeated the line on the air. It then got written down on the wtop.com site as if it was fact. But the request never reached the final arbitration process. Why? Because it was never a serious request. Whoever on the team staff uttered the line probably got a stern talking-to once that WTOP report aired.

On this you base your case that the Lerners are cheap, swanni? No, you already have a bias against the Lerners for some reason or other, and you're grasping at straws trying to find negative things to say about them. The fact that red herrings and urban legends like this are the best you can come up with says volumes about how little truth there is in your "Lerners are cheap" cheap shots.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 15, 2008 9:23 AM | Report abuse

I hate walks,
Nope -- the uniforms that went to arbitration were the security uniforms. The Lerners eventually dropped their request for the city to pay for the team's uniforms.

Posted by: swanni | April 15, 2008 9:23 AM | Report abuse

"The uniforms the Lerners were trying to get included with the stadium were the uniforms of the security guards."

The Lerners (who are cheap) tried to get the city to pay for both the team uniforms and the security guard uniforms. Even the Lerners realized they looked foolish asking for payment for team uniforms, so they dropped the request prior to arbitration. On the issue of security guard uniforms and several other expenses, the Lerners lost a unanimous decision, confirming that the arbitrators considered their request to be without merit.

Posted by: (419 + 1) * 0 | April 15, 2008 9:29 AM | Report abuse

"Finally, 419, if you're posting in parentheses it still doesn't count as being in exile. Just come back full time."

That wasn't me, and after this post I *won't* be back. My brief return yesterday only served to prove that no matter what I post about, you all will complain about it being off-topic or repetitive or whatever. You don't seem to do that with other off-topic or repetive posters. Think I haven't noticed that? Why should I bother writing any more here if you're all just going to dismiss it because it has my name under it before you even read it?

Posted by: Section 419+1 | April 15, 2008 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Aaron F. Boone, I think? I kinda like the good old fashioned [RF] myself, but I'm old school.

p.s. New post.

---

Is [AB] the new [RF]? I know that [RF] came from Robert Fick's colorful vocabulary - what does [AB] come from?

Posted by: natsfan1a | April 15, 2008 9:36 AM | Report abuse

I agree with 506.

---

Finally, 419, if you're posting in parentheses it still doesn't count as being in exile. Just come back full time.

Posted by: natsfan1a | April 15, 2008 9:37 AM | Report abuse

"The Lerners eventually dropped their request for the city to pay for the team's uniforms."

The Lerners never had to drop that request because no one named Lerner or speaking with the authorization of someone named Lerner ever made the request in the first place, swanni. You can keep repeating that one line from a third-hand WTOP report all you want, but it still won't be true. (BTW, that's all the Post reporter did too, in that other story you cite. He just repeated an unattributed line from wtop.com. Some Pulitzer-worthy reporting there, to be sure!)

Posted by: Anonymous | April 15, 2008 9:38 AM | Report abuse

In saying that I agree with 506, I'm referring to what I took to be a peace offering to 419.

Posted by: natsfan1a | April 15, 2008 9:43 AM | Report abuse

"No one named Lerner or speaking with the authorization of someone named Lerner ever made the request in the first place."

Discounting the Post, Times, and WTOP as sources does not help your argument. How about this, find me an official denial from the team. Wouldn't they have denounced such slander?

Posted by: (419 + 1) * 0 | April 15, 2008 9:46 AM | Report abuse

May 9, 2007 (Bloomberg) -- Washington Nationals owner Mark Lerner said the team will have a "substantial" increase in its payroll next season as it moves into its new stadium.

"We will take ourselves to another level," said Lerner, one of the team's principal owners. "We are going to dip into the free-agent market this winter."
__________________________
Logic aside, the franchise was dishonest with the fans, explicitly telling them during the first two seasons that they would become spenders when this year, with the new stadium up and running.

I'll send you $10 American if you can back that up with a published statement from the team.

Posted by: Arkymark | April 15, 2008 9:10 AM

Posted by: Lerners ARE Cheap | April 15, 2008 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Well, they did have a substantial increase in payroll and they did dip into the free agent market, so I don't consider myself deceived.

Posted by: Arkymark | April 15, 2008 10:35 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company