State of the Nationals 3/6

Spring Training is a poor representation of a team's potential for the regular season, usually. I say usually because most of the time, a team has a majority of its starting positions and pitchers locked in, and Spring Training is a time for getting their starters ready for the season, and for having a look at their AAA team. In the case of the Nationals, what you see is what you get.

The obvious clusterf.....area of concern, is the Rotation. Let's access the situation, shall we? John Patterson, the "ace" of our staff, is a Tommy John veteran (as is a good portion of our pitching retreads) has gotten close to the gold standard of 200 innings once in his career, in 2005 (the year where he earned his "ace" status). I'm not seeing him as a 20 win pitcher, but I doubt Johan Santana could win 20 games with this cast.

After Patterson, we've got.....Tim Redding (Astros and White Sox reject, who has a Spring Training ERA of 40.50 (granted it was one start, but the number was sexy). Jerome Williams, considered to be a lock on the 2nd or 3rd spot, has shown nothing. Jason Simontacci stands out of the crowd as being "not awful". So we've got that going for us.

Senior Fruto has disappointed, with a 54.00 ERA. Other lowlights include Joel Haranahan at 135.00 ERA, with 5 runs in 0.1 innings, Mike Bacsick, 37.80 ERA, lowered substantially by a good outing against the Braves today, Luis Martinez, 2.1 IP 5 runs, 15.43 ERA.

So, one could say that our pitching is "not good". They would be masters of understatement, and not familiar with a Thesaurus. A year of rebuilding is painful to watch, but it could be worse. We could be the Royals. We could have no hope in sight, and no talent to watch. What we do have is Ryan Zimmerman, who is tearing the cover off the ball, Brian Schneider, who may finally bust out with a full season of baseball, as opposed to falling apart after the all-star break like he usually does. We've also got young players that are going to bloom into something to see, see Matt Chico, Colten Willams, and Chris Marrero.

So, when you're watching a 12-5 game, and our pitchers are making you think about driving down to RFK, with your spikes and glove, remember you're never going to be a professional baseball player, and to thank your lucky stars we're not the Royals.

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