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Giants/Nationals Series Preview

The thing about the Washington Nationals is...


So the Washington Nationals are...


I mean, I have half a mind to turn this into an open death penalty thread just to get out of pretending to know something about the Nationals. Let’s see if their Baseball-Reference page can jog my memory.

Manager: Jim Riggleman

Oh, great. I had no idea that Riggleman was their manager. That’s not a good sign. I thought the Nationals’ manager was ... that other guy who managed that team that one time. If I didn’t know that, there’s no way I can write this.

11-13, 4th place in NL East

Okay. Not good, not awful. Kind of what was expected.

Ballpark: Nationals Park

I have never heard of this park in my life. Close your eyes. Try to picture Nationals Park. Exactly. It could have a zip line that runs from the upper deck concourse behind home plate to center field, with people paying good money to zip over a baseball game that’s in play. It could have been a huge controversy when it was installed. I mean, "Nationals Park?" That’s like an alias that a real park gives when it’s trying to pick up women on a business trip.

This isn’t going well. Come on, Grant. Think. Something about the Nationals. I can’t even spin this into boring Warren Cromartie anecdotes -- sure the Nationals are the Expos of yore, but that feels like a technicality.

Ryan Zimmerman’s out, so I can’t covet him.

Jayson Werth is slumping, but that’s not a story because he has sixteen years to figure it all out.

Livan Hernandez isn’t pitching in the series, so we don’t have to watch him completely befuddle the Giants with nonsense and marshmallows.

Nothin’. This team is the anti-muse.

Hitter to watch:

Ian Desmond isn’t that special. FanGraphs doesn’t like his defense, and his career minor league numbers are exciting. He’s young enough to develop into something more, but right now he reminds me of Rich Aurilia towards the end of his first Giants career, which at the time seemed like a pretty frustrating player. These days, I’m spending my free time trying to figure out how to acquire Desmond in a trade. What changed?

2011 - Miguel Tejada 22 81 5 17 5 0 1 9 5 7 0 1 .210 .250 .309

Well, yeah. That happens.

Pitcher to watch

It seems like ever since the Nationals have been in Washington, they’ve had a patchwork rotation of semi-familiar names. Esteban Loaiza. Tony Armas. Tomo Okha. Pedro Astacio. Ramon Ortiz. Tim Redding. I can keep going. So when the Nationals finally, finally, finally got a homegrown pitcher to the majors, and he pitched well, it was sad to hear his elbow went sproing. It was one of those items that shows up on the news crawl and makes you wince.

Then the Nationals got an even better homegrown pitcher, and his elbow went sproing too. Dang.

So it’s good to see Jordan Zimmermann back, even if it’s going to take him a while to regain the form he showed in 2009. Doctors were able to take a new ligament from one of his extra "n"s, and he’s throwing as hard as ever.


Something will happen this weekend that will totally remind me how I cried when Randy Johnson won his 300th game at Nationals Park.