Tag Archives: Denard Span

nationalsparkpressbox

I remembered to submit my DC-IBWA 2014 Nats predictions

Every year, the DC Internet Baseball Writers Association sends out questionaires for the Natmosphere about the state of the Washington Nationals. Some years I get to them, some years I don’t. This year, I got to it. Fire away:

1) Who will lead the Nats in home runs in 2014? – Bryce Harper
2) Who will lead the Nats in RBI? – Bryce Harper
3) Who will lead the Nats in stolen bases? – Denard Span
4) Who will lead the staff in wins? – Stephen Strasburg
5) How many games will Ryan Zimmerman play first base? – 11
6) Who starts more games: Ross Detwiler, Taylor Jordan, Tanner Roark, Ross Ohlendorf? – Taylor Roark
7) Who will get more at bats for the Nats this season: Danny Espinosa or Jamey Carroll? – Danny Espinosa
8) Which minor leaguer are you most interested in keeping tabs on this season? – Lucas Giolito
9) Who will reach majors first: Sammy Solis, A.J. Cole, Lucas Giolito or Matt Purke? – Matt Purke
10) How many all-stars will the Nats have? Who? – 3 – Bryce Harper, Stephen Strasburg, Wilson Ramos
11) Total wins and what place in the division? 92, 1st

Essay: What should be the single most important development for the Nats this season?

The Nationals single biggest development should be playing smarter. The talent is there, as we saw in 2012, but last season they had a tendency towards defensive lapses that extended innings and wore down pitchers. Another part of playing smarter is not playing with serious injuries. Harper played hurt for the bulk of the season and Espinosa played his way out of the majors. In the outfield at least, an improved bench should make it easier for manager Matt Williams to give Jayson Werth, Span and Harper some days off with Nate McLouth as the fourth outfielder, so nagging injuries may bee mitigated somewhat. In the infield, Espinosa is a big question mark as the utility man coming off of injuries to both arms.

Strasburg also faces a big year at the top of the rotation after an “off” year in 2013. A recent Post article suggests he had an epiphany about his approach. Strasburg has always come off as intelligent, but very sensitive at the same time. If he has overcome his perfectionist tendencies and self-flagellation, he could dominate with more regularity. Simply put, a focused Strasburg, more comfortable with being an ace and all that entails could be devastating to NL hitters.

Lastly, I believe that Williams approach to defense and hiring of a “defensive coordinator” could help address defensive lapses. Not necessarily because shifts in and of themselves can anticipate where batted balls are going, but also keeping the fielders a little more focused. The question will be whether this will help overcome the learning curve that Williams will face as a rookie manager. Thus far, the tone he is setting for the team is refreshing after Davey Johnson’s casual approach in 2013.

I’ll be surprised if the Nats win 98 games like they did in 2012 — I think that was the peak year in the regular season at least, but I don’t see the Braves winning 96 again either. I believe the Braves will challenge to for the NL East title and probably make the play-in game. After that, it’s all about matchups in the playoffs, so, who knows?

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

MEDIOCRITY CLINCHED: Nats sweep doubleheader, win 81st game

A big day for the resurgent Washington Nationals — they won twice today over the first place Atlanta Braves and for the 27th time in 37 games. Denard Span extended is hitting streak to 28 games. Ryan Zimmerman hit his 10th home run in 15 games. Tanner Roark went to 7-0 since being called up. The Nats kept pace in the second play-in game spot at race 4½ games back of the Cincinnati Reds.

GAME 1

NATS! SNATCHING VICTORY FROM THE JAWS OF DEFEAT FROM THE JAWS OF VICTORY

— William F. Yurasko (@doubleuefwhy) September 17, 2013

A 3-0 lead turns into a 5-3 defecit, but the Nats get to Craig Kimbrel in the 9th with a walk, single, walk, sacrifice and two-run error by Andrelton Simmons. D-SPAN wins it.

GAME 2

Roark throws seven scoreless. Nats overcome Trent Jewitt letting D-Span go for home. Rafael Soriano overcomes two leadoff baserunners in non-save situation. Nats pile on late, win 4-0. Braves can’t clinch NL East in D.C.

So, which was more important to you?

What Washington Nationals ACHIEVEMENT are you more excited about?
  
pollcode.com free polls 

Oh and here are playoff scenarios: If The Nats Do This And Reds Do That Then Playoffs Here We Come

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

Gio Gonzalez pitches one-hitter against Mets; Nats hit five homers in 9-0 win

Wait, a one-hitter but no embedable MLB.com video? Your embedding policy is arbitrary and capricious, MLB.

In the most highly anticipated D.C. sports event of the night, Gio Gonzalez led the Washington Nationals to a 9-0 win over the New York Mets. All the hype that Washingtonians have been experiencing for last night – totally on point and worth it.

Gonzalez had one of the best starts ever by a D.C. pitcher.

                       IP H R ER BB SO HR
Gonzalez (W, 10-6)	9 1 0 0 2  8  0

ESPN’s boxscore gives Gonazlez a 91 game score. Jordan Zimmermann’s April 26 win over the Cincinnati Reds, perhaps the finest start by a D.C. pitcher since 1931 had a game score of 88. Here is an explanation of Bill James’ game score stat:

Start with 50 points. Add 1 point for each out recorded, (or 3 points per inning). Add 2 points for each inning completed after the 4th. Add 1 point for each strikeout. Subtract 2 points for each hit allowed. Subtract 4 points for each earned run allowed. Subtract 2 points for each unearned run allowed. Subtract 1 point for each walk.

So, is that better than Zimmermann’s April gem? Looking back, Zimmermann only had 4 strikeouts, but allowed one fewer baserunner. He also did it against the Reds, a team the Nats have been seemingly 7 games back of for the last month and a half. The Mets on the other hand, are nine under. Zimmermann also pitched that game with only one run of support, while Gonzalez had nine runs of support last night.

I’ll give the nod to Zimmermann for the best pitched game in modern Nats history.

Those nine runs I just mentioned came off of five home runs. Denard Span and Ryan Zimmerman hit solo shots back-to-back in the 1st. Zimmerman has been on fire this last week, hitting homers in each of his last three games (4 overall) and 6 since September 2. Span and Zimmermann scored on Jayson Werth’s third inning home run. Werth is first in the NL in SLG and OPS. Tyler Moore hit a solo homer and Wilson Ramos hit a 3-run homer.

The Nats continued their winning ways, winning their 20th in 29 tries. The playoffs are long out of reach, but the team is playing up to it’s capabilities at last. That and an easier schedule.

Gio Gonzalez throws one-hitter as Nationals clobber 5 home runs in 9-0 win over MetsThe Post

So, what were you watching last night? Oh, that.

Get well, Bryce Harper.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

Nats take Tigers series with 5-4 win; untucking is so dumb I only want to see it about 85 more times

The Washington Nationals won their weird two game interleague series with the Detroit Tigers with a 5-4 win yesterday (Boxscore). Since it started at 4:05 p.m. I listened to it during the last part of work. I then had a 3-hour commute to get home (with several stops), so having Charlie Slowes and Dave Jageler calling the win was really good.

The Nats jumped all over Detroit starter Doug Fister, scoring five runs off of him in the first two innings. They knocked him out after 3 innings, surely limiting television viewers from many terrible Fister jokes. Charlie & Dave had their share and delivered them well — they had to, otherwise the writers get offended.

Those five D.C. runs came off of only one extra-base hit, a leadoff double by Denard Span to open the game. Singles, walks and a hit-by-pitch led the way for the rest of the runs. The bats went cold after the 2nd though as the Tigers bullpen shut the door.

Dan Haren pitched decently through 5 innings, giving up only one run on a RBI single by Fister. However, a walk and a bunt single in the 6th set the table for PH Matt Tuiasosopo to homer and bring the game within one. Ryan Mattheus, Drew Storen held the Tigers scoreless in the 7th and 8th.

The Nats bullpen held on and everybody untucked their jerseys after Rafael Soriano‘s 12th save. The untucking trend (DC Sports Bog, The Post) is kind of stupid, but if they do it 11 times in October, I won’t complain.

The Tigers haven’t beaten the Nats since 2009. To my friend J.J. in Michigan, I reminded him of this:

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

Nats undefeated and unscored upon after two games; Gio homers

Gio Gonzalez threw seven scoreless innings and homered to start the scoring for the Washington Nationals:

I had just “liked’ a tumblr post by Tom Bridge about his conversion to the light side of the force with regards to pitchers batting.

Gonzalez didn’t have his sharpest stuff, but facing the Miami Marlins he can get away with it. Asked how he felt about throwing this evening:

Um, Gio?

The second run came in the 7th with two-men on and Denard Span at the plate. Span grounded towards the second baseman, nearly hitting pinch runner Roger Bernadina who came to an aburpt stop and collided with the second baseman. A throw to first nearly got Span, but he was safe and the second run was in.

The third run was Bryce Harper scoring from second on Ryan Zimmerman single. Harper’s double was a few feet short of his third homer of the year on the right field wall.

MORE INTERESTING TWEETS

Bad faith, bad effort, bad channel, bad deal.

IN SCORES OF OTHER GAMES

Good night!

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

D-Span: Nats get Denard Span from Twins for prospect Alex Meyer

Since time immemorial, Washington Nationals general managers have craved a centerfielder who could lead off. Why GMs Jim Bowden and Mike Rizzo were so insistent for those two skillsets combined is a mystery that may never be fully understood. That led to experiments with the likes of Nook Logan, Lastings Milledge and Nyjer Morgan. Now, Rizzo believes he has acquired the player once thought to be an impossible dream. Denard Span (Baseball Reference) is coming to D.C.

Span, previously with the Minnesota Twins, was actually born in the nation’s capital(Nationals Journal, The Post) when his mother went labor earlier than expected. Speaking his mother, he hit her with a foul ball in spring training once (Nats Enquirer). She was fine (twinsbaseball.com).

Naturally, the newest Nat will be known as D-SPAN. It is probably only a matter of time before Brian Lamb is asked to comment.

Denard Span - D-SPAN

Back to the field, the ramifications of Span’s arrival are many and let’s just say, if you were looking forward to Michael Morse and Adam LaRoche playing together again, you will probably be disappointed. Morse won’t be a starting outfielder with Jayson Werth and Bryce Harper manning the corners and Span in center. That means he has to supplant LaRoche at first or be sent elsewhere. LaRaoche is unsigned at this point, but the Nats still want him. This, and what losing another pitching prospect in Alex Meyer, means is explained well here: Ripple effects from the Alex Meyer-Denard Span trade (Nationals Journal, The Post). It seems like a solid trade that screams the Nats are in “WIN NOW” mode which is a pretty good sign.


Rizzo: Span will “come into his own” in WashingtonCSN Washington

TWITTER REACTIONS

HOW TWITTER WAS WON TONIGHT

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)