We’re all cooped up with not much to do. Thankfully, that also means we have time to step back and reflect on some aspects of life that we may not have otherwise. It’s also a chance to look back at the last decade in sports.
The Nationals had somewhat of a fairytale decade. They went from cellar-dwellers of the NL East and the entire major leagues — five years removed from relocating from Montreal — to perennial playoff contenders, and then capped it off with a World Series championship.
There’s a lot to reflect upon, from stars of the era to short-term contributors that you may have forgotten. With that, I’ve decided to recap the decade that was for the franchise by unveiling an All-Decade roster. However, before doing so, I thought it would only be fair to recognize some of the best players that couldn’t quite make in into my top 25. After all, the franchise’s core wasn’t entirely consistent — not even from 2012 until the end. Continue reading “Washington Nationals “Best of the Rest” Pitchers of the 2010s”→
Now that the draft is upon us and free agency has — for the most part — played out, we all have a better sense of team needs. With that, I’ve given myself the liberty to add some definition to my original draft predictions. In fact, I surprised myself so much that a decided to develop a rapid-fire second round section at no additional charge to my readers!
If you’ve been keeping up with the pre-draft process, you likely know that the wide receiver group is probably the deepest position in this year’s class, and it has the potential to shatter some records. There have never been more than seven wide receivers taken in the first round (2004) or 12 in the first two rounds (2014).
Draft season is upon us, and I have plenty of thoughts. So without further ado, here’s my first attempt at a mock draft.
1. Cincinnati Bengals: QB Joe Burrow (LSU)
Don’t make this harder than it has to be. Burrow isn’t the top player on my unofficial big board, and there are mixed reports on whether he wants to go to Cincinnati, but he had a historic collegiate season and is the top available quarterback for a QB-needy team.
Anthony Rendon is gone, and that leaves a gaping hole at the hot corner for the defending World Series champions. As I mentioned in mySpring Training primer, the ideal scenario was for top prospect Carter Kieboom to take over the starting job. Whether it was his job to lose or if it was simply his to compete for has come into question recently, but either way, Kieboom starting early in 2020 was undeniably the organization’s preference. If it wasn’t, they would’ve pursued a third baseman — Nolan Arenado, Kris Bryant, Josh Donaldson, Mike Moustakas, Eduardo Escobar; the list goes on — much more seriously this offseason.
As time passes, it looks increasingly likely that Kieboom starts the season in the minor leagues. There’s still a chance that he wins the third base job, but he hasn’t done himself any favors offensively — he was 1–12 (.083 average) this spring before going 2–2 off the bench yesterday — or defensively — he has two errors (and a third that could’ve gone against him) on only 13 official chances. Nonetheless, he still has a chance to improve before Opening Day — and get off the bench. For the sake of this exercise, however, I’ll assume he doesn’t crack the initial 26-man roster.
Before the start of Spring Training, I touched on the key roster battles the Nationals were faced with. Most of those don’t have significant clarity yet, but one appears to have taken center stage: the fifth starter role.
Aside from Stephen Strasburg and Patrick Corbin— who will make their debuts over the next two days — and Max Scherzer— who just made his second appearance last night — every starter has thrown one time. With that in mind, here’s a look at how round one went for the men whose jobs are most in limbo and how they project going forward. Continue reading “Round One of Spring Training Goes to Austin Voth and Joe Ross”→