A big project at work and illnesses at home (we’ll be fine) have cut into time for EVERYTHING this week, so I have not been keeping up with blogging. All I have to write about is Nats Blogger Day and a week at Disney World. In the meantime, I have a few observations about the Washington Nationals:
Nyjer Morgan finally got suspended yesterday after what seemed like a month of waiting for an appeal. In reality, it was more like 12 days. He had his 7-game suspension for ball thrown in the stands removed, but gets 8 for the brawl against the Florida Marlins. He also got fined. I’m glad this is over, but I’d be more glad if I didn’t think he would be back because NYJER MORGAN KILLED THE 2010 SEASON. His low on-base-percentage, his high caught stealing, the fly balls going over his head, checking catchers instead of sliding, the temper tantrums have just been miserable. I don’t know what happened, but his head hasn’t been in the right place all season it would seem. Did the endless praise for him coming go to his head? Did he resent having to learn to slide feet first, a practice abanndoned early? Whatever it is, when I think of this latest lost season, I am going to think of him. I am not saying that this would have been a playoff team, but I have no doubt that his arrested development cost the Nats several wins. I am sure once he is gone, somebody will tell a beat writer that Morgan was a clubhouse problem.
That being said, I am still glad he was traded here, if only to get rid of Lastings Milledge who just annoyed me. At least Morgan had a decent 1.5 months last season, about 1.4 decent months more than Milledge ever had.
John Lannan had a very rough first half of the season with a high ERA that got him demoted. He came back has 6 quality starts in 8 attempts and is 8-7. With 2 or 3 starts left it seems to me that no matter what Lannan does, he will always win 9 games. He has the previous 2 seasons.
Lannan’s latest win clinched the latest series against the Atlanta Braves, who are fighting for their playoff lives. The Nats have a winning record against them this season.
Thomas Boswell compares and contrasts Jim Riggleman and Buck Showalter new manager of the hated Baltimore Orioles. Unfortunately, The Post’s dedicated baseball columnist is drinking some of the Showalter Kool-Aid.
More troubling — Boswell seems to be stumping for Adam Dunn to sign with the O’s. I want Dunn here, not there.
Ron Menchine, the final voice of the Washington Senators — I think his voice is heard in the Nats radio broadcast intro lamenting the fate of the Senators, has died. I was looking for a Post obituary, but there is not one yet. Bad form Post. Even The Sun — Baltimore’s paper, give Menchine an obit which includes a drawing of Menchine in a Senators jacket.
Stephen J. Walker, author of A Whole New Ballgame: The 1969 Washington Senators, wrote an obituary for Menchine that you need to read. Menchine spent much of the final broadcast bashing carpertbagging Bob Short. The legend is that Short was listening to the game via speakerphone in Minnesota and ordered Menchine off the air, but no one would do it.
Mark Hornbaker of Nationals Daily News reminisced as well.
It is a shame that Olney, Md. native Justin Maxwell can only hit with the bases loaded. 3 grand slams in 4 ABs with the bases loaded is impressive. One of the biggest regrets I have about the Nats is not following through on going to the last game of the season in 2009 when one of those grand slams ended the game against the New York Mets.
Stan Kasten will probably be quite pleased to learn that I am going to a Nats game with a Phillies fan on the next homestand. I’m going to try and take in the 4:35 p.m. Houston Astros game too.
MissChatter on NatsTown is worth a read and not just caused she linked me. I really wish I had a Blogger Day recap now…