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Comment of the Day: A very optimistic Nats fan

Aug 13, 2012, 8:57 AM EDT

MLB-Atlanta Braves @ Washington Nationals

One post this morning and we already have our comment of the day.  In response to my concerns over the Nats seemingly being willing to let Stephen Strasburg miss the playoffs, jea1978 says “don’t worry, it’s all good, bro”

I am a Nats fan, season ticket holder since ’07, and I 100% agree with this. Besides losing LaRoche, E Jax, and maybe decreased production from Werth, we will be the same team for the next three years at least. We will win multiple world series, as long as don’t do something stupid and blow out Stras’ arm.

The 1986 Mets, 1995 Braves, 2008 Phillies and a zillion other awesome-on-paper teams say “hi.”

I’m not saying the Nats future isn’t bright. Of course it is.  But dynasties in baseball are the exception, not the rule. No matter how good your team looks, guys get injured. Other teams get better. Can’t-miss stars occasionally miss. Your star right fielder and phenom starter get addicted to cocaine. Baseball history is littered with would-be dynasties with nothing to show for all of their promise.

Maybe the Nats do win “multiple World Series.” But you gotta win one first. And preemptively shutting down your otherwise healthy ace when you look like the best team in the National League seems a funny way to go about doing that.

  1. sictransitchris - Aug 13, 2012 at 8:58 AM

    comment of the day and it’s not even 9 AM!

  2. indaburg - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:01 AM

    Ayup. No guarantees in baseball or in life. Conservatively using Strasburg is wise. Cryogenically freezing him and treating him like a China doll is not. Carpe diem, seize the day, go for it, and all those other cliches. You never know when ths moment will come again.

    Signed,
    Childhood fan of the ’86 Mets

    • someguyinva - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:33 AM

      You forgot my personal favorite, “Flags Fly Forever”.

      I’m a Nats fan, and I can see both sides to the decision, but I think it might be hard to convince Nats fans that injuries can derail optimistic projections, given the injuries (Morse, Werth, Zimmerman, Storen) that the Nats have had to deal with this year.

      The argument that makes more sense, to me, is the “anyone can win a short series” one, and interestingly enough, that argument can be used to both defend and oppose the shutting down of Strasburg, since it can’t be assumed that the Nats would even make it past the NLDS with Strasburg. You can argue that he increases their chance of winning a short series, but history’s littered with supposedly superior teams that lost postseason series.

      • purnellmeagrejr - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:49 AM

        DO Mets fans remember TIm Leary, Jason Isringhausen and Billl Pulsifer? WHen those guys hit the bigs the MEts willl have it made.

        Craig’s column was excelllent agreee with alll major points. As they used to say, “That’s why they play the games.” I believed this until I found out about gambling.

      • realitypolice - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:28 AM

        The argument is not complex. If you have a shot at a championship, you take it. I mean, think about what your saying. Superior teams lose post season series? Um, no kidding. That’s the ultimate argument for going for it now. You can have the most stacked roster in the history of baseball, and a combination of bad luck and injuries can take it all away. You are on the cusp of something great, Nats fans. Don’t let a thousand specious arguments cloud your vision. Your GM is telling you that the team’s investment is more important than going all out to win a championship that is sitting right in front of you, right now. I would be outraged. If my team did it, and believe me they never, ever, would, I don’t know if I could keep rooting for them.

      • Dan McCloskey - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:07 AM

        I believe it’s Paul Wilson, Isringhausen and Pulsipher that purnell is referring to. Tim Leary is about 15 years older than those guys.

      • recoveringcubsfan - Aug 14, 2012 at 6:51 AM

        As a guy who had his young dreams crushed by the implosions of Kerry Wood and Mark Prior – both due to arm injuries possibly caused by overuse when they were too young to handle the workload – I agree 100% with the idea of not making Strasburg throw almost 10 times as many innings this year as he did all of last year. Good teams come and go, but they come around a lot more often if you don’t blow out the young guys’ arms just because you can.

  3. heyblueyoustink - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:14 AM

    There’s nothing wrong with wishful thinking!

    Signed, Jose Canseco

  4. personalspaceinvader - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:14 AM

    I will say this. If Strasburg looks back on his career at a tender old age, and there was a time where he could have helped the Nationals win the WS if it meant cutting his career a bit short: I’d be willing to bet he will wish they would have pitched it.

    Of course, I think we’re all getting a WEE BIT ahead of ourselves when it comes to the World Series. It’s still August.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:19 AM

      there was a time where he could have helped the Nationals win the WS if it meant cutting his career a bit short: I’d be willing to bet he will wish they would have pitched it.

      And that’s precisely why it’s up to management. Never mind the fact you could use the above argument as justification for PED use, look at all the guys in the NFL who continue to play with the severe concussion consequences. Read this article by Malcolm Gladwell*, and notice all the shit Kyle Turley went through to get on the field, and all the side effects he’s dealing with now, but he still says he’d go through with it again.

      Allowing athletes to determine whether they can play or not at a (great) risk of injury is the very definition of allowing the inmates to run the asylum.

      *http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/10/19/091019fa_fact_gladwell

      • seeinred87 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:11 AM

        I agree completely, CotPO. I touched on that in my comment in the Strasburg post.

        I’m sure Stras would love to keep pitching. But the team just can’t take the chance of sacrificing his career to win now.

      • personalspaceinvader - Aug 13, 2012 at 12:13 PM

        I just think that if we get to October and the Nationals are still in it and Strasburg (their best pitcher and franchise player) is able to pitch, they would be fools not to let him. Sure, longevity is a concern but if it really is in their grasp, you gotta pull the trigger and let him pitch.

        Let slip the dogs of war.

      • recoveringcubsfan - Aug 14, 2012 at 6:56 AM

        I heard a boxer tell his corner once that he was “feeling great” and was perfectly OK and ready to go out for the next round – despite the fact that his legs were like spaghetti and he was bleeding from both eyes and both ears. Also, I try to read lips when managers go out to get their pitchers and I have never seen a pitcher say anything even remotely like “yeah, I am ready to go to the showers now. Thanks, coach.” Pitchers pitch. Boxers fight. You never ask them a stupid question like “can you keep going?” because there is only one answer.

  5. lewp - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:15 AM

    “Baseball history is littered with would-be dynasties with nothing to show for all of their promise”

    My Rangers know this all too well.

  6. whistler1217 - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:18 AM

    I have to agree with indaburg. On paper, the Twins were stacked for 2010, not to mention opening the new stadium. I’m fine with an organization building through the farm system and going slow to build the right way. I get that owners are in it to make money, that’s why they are billionaires. BUt when you are close to a championship, you have to go all-in. The MN Twins owners are among the richest in sports, yet in the third year of our new stadium, they have already cut playroll.

    I cant remember the last DC area title, maybe a Redskins title in the 90’s. But DC, like MN needs a title. Go for it.

  7. jtchernak - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:22 AM

    Most arrogant fans in the lg

    • jea1978 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:50 AM

      Why take a random shot at Yankee fans in the middle of this discussion?

      • groundruledoublebourbon - Aug 13, 2012 at 5:20 PM

        On point, jea1978. Bravo.

  8. darthicarus - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:22 AM

    At least 2 of the next 3 World Series will be won by the Nationals? Well hell I’m heading off to Vegas to place my bets now, it’s like guaranteed money!

    • jea1978 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:46 AM

      You’d be wise to!

  9. brewcrewfan54 - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:33 AM

    Go for it now while you’re in the position to do so.

  10. kkolchak - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:41 AM

    Not unexpectedly, it seems like bunches of “fans” have suddenly jumped on the Nats’ bandwagon. Those of us who have suffered with this team since 2005 would never make such a silly statement. Winning ONE title would be an incredible accomplishment by itself given that there hasn’t been one in DC in 88 years.

    • bmorelikeme - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:50 AM

      Not a Nats fan, but I live in the DMV and this statement is incredibly accurate. The number of “fans” that have come out of the woodwork to support this team is mindboggling. It’s also terribly difficult to have a baseball conversation with majority of them as they don’t seem to realzie they don’t know anything about baseball.

      But then again, we have to remember these are mostly the same fans who think the skins are winning the super bowl this year because RG3 led a TD drive in his first preseason game.

      • brewcrewfan54 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:01 AM

        Obviously its no surprise that when a team is winning a bunch of idiots come out of the woodwork claiming to be a “real fan.” You DC guys haven’t had a lot to cheer about sportswise in quite a while so you haven’t had to deal with it until recently.

      • Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:27 AM

        “It’s also terribly difficult to have a baseball conversation with majority of them as they don’t seem to realzie they don’t know anything about baseball.”

        Why do you have to bring natslady into this?

      • kkolchak - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:16 AM

        As recently as last season, you could visit just about any sports bar in the DC area on game day, and the broadcast wouldn’t even be on. That’s how little people cared before now.

      • 18thstreet - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:50 AM

        You know what? OF COURSE fans are coming out of the woodwork. The team’s been here for less than a decade. Most of the people who live here were not born when the Senators left or lived elsewhere. They’re building something, and the idea that they would be finished building it on the very day the Expos arrived and started playing in Viera under different letterhead is a ridiculous standard.

        This is how you build a fan base: (1) existing and (2) winning. There’s a lot of people jumping on the bandwagon right now — my five-year old daughter might be one of them — who will be lifetime fans of the team.

        For twenty years before Ruth arrived, the Yankees were far less popular than the Giants. Winning changes stuff.

    • realitypolice - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:31 AM

      LOL @ “suffered since 2005″. Oh, you poor tortured soul. Talk to a Cubs fan about throwing away a legitimate shot at a title to protect an investment.

      • Kevin S. - Aug 13, 2012 at 1:02 PM

        Talk to a Cubs fan about what? They blew their investments and still choked away a shot at the title. Thanks Dusty!

      • Kevin S. - Aug 13, 2012 at 1:13 PM

        I still think the Nats would be best off tranistioning Stras into a multi-inning reliever about 30 IP before his cap, and then leveraging the hell out if him in the playoffs. Instead of getting zero innings out of him, maximize the value of the few he gives you.

      • realitypolice - Aug 13, 2012 at 1:17 PM

        They have to do something. If the Nats make the playoffs and they shut him down, they better win it all or they will be gutted by their fans and the media.

      • recoveringcubsfan - Aug 14, 2012 at 7:01 AM

        Yeah, what are you talking about realitypolice? The Cubs ruined their talent with bad brains, over and over again, and then still choked away their title hopes. They never protected an investment or even tried to. And as for the Nats being gutted by their fans if they don’t win the WS and bench Strasburg – again, what? People are insanely optimistic about this team (see: the reason we’re on this comment thread) and will be insanely optimistic about it next year with a healthy Strasburg, win or lose this year.

      • realitypolice - Aug 14, 2012 at 9:25 AM

        The only point I was trying to make is the Cubs fans have waited an awful lot longer for a WS win than Nats fans, and that a Cubs fan would probably tell a Nats fan not to be happy that their GM is throwing away a chance to win one now. That’s all.

    • jea1978 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:56 AM

      I’ve been a Nats fan since ’05 when I finally got a hometown team. I’ve lived in the DC area all my life. I’ve been a season ticket holder since ’07. That’s mulitple 100 loss seasons. I was there for the John Patterson as our ace days. I was there for all three games at the end of the ’07 season when we basically knocked the Phillies out of the playoffs. That includes all… 15? 18? …. innings of the second game, and the third game that started at midnight.
      So is there anything else you want to be conclusively wrong about? Anything else you want to make up out of thin air?

      • kkolchak - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:17 AM

        Guess your just an idiot then.

      • spol85 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:19 AM

        Hate to break the news to you ….. but the Phillies won the NL East in 2007.

      • spol85 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:24 AM

        And now that I looked it up, the Phillies beat Washington 2 of the last 3 games of the year including the final day of the season.

      • vader000 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:32 AM

        “I was there for all three games at the end of the ’07 season when we basically knocked the Phillies out of the playoffs.” Ummmm what? The Phillies made ghe playoffs and beat the Gnats 2 out of 3. This is the perfect example of why these might be the worst fans in the game. Absolutely zero knowledge of the gamr, acting like 5 years is out of this world devotion and accusing people of making things up out of thin air then doing the exact same thing. What a dope.

      • jea1978 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:49 AM

        A) kkolchak – see, now you actually made a real point rather than just making stuff up, good job! Now, due to that point being one word with no basis, you are only simple, rather than a daydreaming idiot. Maybe, given time, you can actually make an viable argument. Then you’ll be a real person!
        B) My bad, it was ’06 we knocked the Phil’s out of the playoffs. Feel free to continue to makes comments claiming I, and all Nats fans, are idiots because my memory was off one year. And keep claiming Nats fans are worst than Phillies fans, Yankee fans, Red Sox fans, and Cardinals fans. Yeah, it’s a believable argument, totally, so keep saying that. Note how I don’t bash vader000 for the typo that resulted in “game” being spelled “gamr”. That’s because my argument isn’t so future that I’m forced to jump on what is obviously a small mistake.

      • vader000 - Aug 13, 2012 at 12:33 PM

        The point is you seem to be begging for a pat on the back because you watched some meaningless games at the end of the season. And the Phillies finished 3 games out of the wildcard in ’06 so losing 2 of 3 in the second to the last series of the season didn’t technically knock them out of the playoffs. Misspelling a word is much different then citing an incorrect year if you are using it for your arguement. And yes the Nationals fan base is worse then all the ones you mentioned because all of them have core fans with a lot of knowldge and passion for the game. On the other hand your team still can’t sell out its own stadium despite this year’s success let alone have a knowledgable, passionate and loyal fan base. I would actually be rooting for the Nats if the majority of their “fans” didn’t act like they are long suffering baseball devotees….

      • jea1978 - Aug 13, 2012 at 1:14 PM

        I’m not begging for a pat on the back. Remember how this comment thread started? It was kkolchak claiming I’m a bandwagon fan. I was just pointing out I’m not.
        Maybe it’s easy for you to remember years but I have trouble remembering if those three games were when we sucked in ’06 or when we sucked in ’07. They merge into one big suck memory. I only knew they weren’t ’08 because the games were in RFK and our new stadium opened for ’08.
        I didn’t say the series technically knocked them out. I put a qualifier in there. If you pay attention it will keep you from making these mistakes.
        The Nats fan base is not a problem at all. We do have a lot of good baseball fans, the problem is many of their loyalties are spread around to different teams since we didn’t have a team. But we also have a hardcore Nats fan base. Just because you ran into two people that claimed to be Nats fans and don’t know baseball doesn’t mean that’s the whole team.
        Any claim by anyone that the Nats fans are worse than Phillies, Yankees, or Red Sox fans is an obvious joke of a comment. I take it you are a Phillies fan?
        Our attendance figures are extremely strong this year and will only get stronger as we continue to be a dominant force in baseball and we win our two World Series’ in the next couple years.
        Sure, I’m sure you would be rooting for the Nats if only. All of your comments so far have been fair and not at all biased against the Nats, so I’m sure you would be.

      • vader000 - Aug 13, 2012 at 2:30 PM

        I would love to live in your world for a day dude….

      • 18thstreet - Aug 13, 2012 at 3:09 PM

        John Patterson, briefly, WAS an ace. I remember attending a game that was scorecard was the cleanest thing I’d ever created because all he did was throw fly-ball outs in spacious RFK. He had some great moments.

      • cleverbob - Aug 13, 2012 at 3:19 PM

        In addition to those WS rings, count on back to back Cy Young Awards and MVP’s for Strasburg and Harper, respectively. Maybe a triple crown, but let’s not go nuts.

      • recoveringcubsfan - Aug 14, 2012 at 7:07 AM

        vader, you make me laugh. I think anybody with eyes, ears, and a nose would have to admit that the Phillies have far worse fans than the Nats. They bus down for the beginning of the season, taunt Werth after he breaks his wrist, cause problems in the stands, then cheer Hamels for beaning a rookie (who steals home on Hamels later the same inning), then they get a proud and puffy about “prestige baseball” whatever that is, and then…well, I was at the last Nats-Phils game and there just weren’t many “prestige baseball”-backers in attendance. What happened? I guess those are the good fans. And here in DC people just get excited about their team and that makes them let’s see: “stupid,” “idiots,” worst fans in the game,” and so on. So many cool people taking time out to let DC fans know how much they suck. Thank you.

  11. crash1582 - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:57 AM

    When is the last time anybody herd a GM openly give honest stradegy info out to the public and have it be true? I think he walks though the right field wall in Charlie Sheen Form on Game 1 of the WS..lol

  12. vcupats - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:00 AM

    Nats fan here. Let’s pump the brakes on the “winning multiple titles” thing. It’s a good team playing good baseball, let’s enjoy the reversal of fortune and not put the bullseye on our backs.

  13. thefalcon123 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:03 AM

    Let’s compare two pitchers

    Strasburg: 133 innings, shut down for playoffs, Tommy John Surgery in August 2010

    Wainwright: 145 innings, no indication of being shut down, Tommy John Surgery in Feb 2011

    People are treating the Strasburg situation like it’s a sure bet he’s going to be injured if he crosses a magical innings threshold. This is absurdity. This is the Nationals being overly cautious and will ultimately do the them great harm. Don’t abuse you’re pitchers, but don’t throw up an artificial limit based upon nothing but wild speculation.
    (at this point, someone may be tempted to site the “Verducci Effect”. Let’s just let Deadspin handle that argument: http://deadspin.com/5877565/the-verducci-effect-is-overworked-and-broken-down)

    A questions that needs to be asked: Are pitchers coming off Tommy John that more much likely to get injured at 220 innings as opposed to 180 innings? If so, how great is that risk and is it worthwhile when the result could be a World Series TItle?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:17 AM

      Let’s compare two pitchers

      4 years prior to TJ surgery season
      Adam Wainwright – 797IP
      Strasburg – 113IP

      The innings limit isn’t just because he had TJ surgery last year, it’s that Strasburg has never thrown the amount of innings, EVER, as a professional as he’s approaching now.

      note, I agree the Verducci Effect is utter BS, but the Nationals are still trying to be careful with their star player.

      • thefalcon123 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:28 AM

        : Are pitchers coming off Tommy John that more much likely to get injured at 220 innings as opposed to 180 innings? If so, how great is that risk and is it worthwhile when the result could be a World Series TItle?

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:39 AM

        The innings limit isn’t just because he had TJ surgery last year, it’s that Strasburg has never thrown the amount of innings, EVER, as a professional as he’s approaching now.

      • thefalcon123 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:51 AM

        So, the question:

        Does the increased risk of injury based upon 40 additional innings outweigh the the harm caused by the Nationals in the postseason by not having Strausberg in the rotation?

        Also, really, how much does that risk of injury increase?

        This is the point of the game. To go to the postseason and win a title. You seem to be endorsing the notion that the the minor *possibility* of additional injury, based upon on the fact that he hasn’t pitched that many innings before, is more important. Their protecting an investment? *What are they even making this investment for then?*

      • seeinred87 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:20 AM

        @ falcon

        Yes, the increased risk DOES outweigh the harm (or rather, lack of good) done to the team by shutting him down.

        As for your last question there, they signed him to play baseball for their team. He IS an investment. The team wants him for years and years to come. The terms of his contract aren’t “until you lead us to a WS.”

        There’s more to this decision than just thinking about this October. You have to consider the possible long term effects on both Strasburg and the team. I think that the risk does outweigh the potential rewards here. Other people don’t, obviously. That’s what it comes down to though.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:31 AM

        Does the increased risk of injury based upon 40 additional innings outweigh the the harm caused by the Nationals in the postseason by not having Strausberg in the rotation?

        The problem also is it’s far more than 40. As of right now (someone double check my #s please), he’s pitched a total of [professional]:

        2010 – 123.1
        2011 – 44.1
        2012 – 133.1

        So he’s already 10 IP ahead of his career high, and they are going to cap him almost 60 IP (!)over his career high (if they let him hit 180). 220 IP, like Wainwright mentioned above, would be almost 100IP over his career high.

      • recoveringcubsfan - Aug 14, 2012 at 7:13 AM

        My stats say Strasburg only threw 24 innings last year before he went down with injury. So, we’re talking pitching him 10x as many innings as he had in 2011. That would be…what’s the word…smart? No, not smart.

        And whatever happened to Adam Wainwright, anyway? He’s had one season wiped out by arm troubles and another drastically shortened (2008). Pitchers get hurt all the time, but let’s not go begging for it.

  14. realitypolice - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:10 AM

    Ask Dan Marino about the certainty of staying at the top. Went to the Super Bowl as a rookie, assumed he go back multiple times, never did. I can’t believe there isn’t more outrage about this. If the Nats Gm pulls his greatest player off of a team that is at the top of the league and a favorite to go all the way, he is flat out telling fans that his investment is more important than fulfilling the dreams of his fans. You don’t make decisions for the future that derail a potential championship run! When has this ever been done in the history of professional sports? Seriously, if I were a Nats fan, I would be organizing protests at the stadium. This will not be forgotten by history. Even if the Nats do win multiple titles in the future, they will also and always be remembered as the team that purposely derailed their own chances in 2012.

  15. professormaddog31 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:11 AM

    Maybe I’m just old school, but can’t we let a pitcher pitch? I understand keeping a guy healthy but we’re fooling ourselves if we think shutting a guy down is gonna keep him Tupperware fresh forever. There is a difference in giving Stras a few more games and working him like a dog ala Mark Prior so many years ago. When did we forget long ball tossing and the wisdom of Johnny Sain? If this is the future of pitching, I’m a bit concerned…

    • thefalcon123 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:14 AM

      I say we leave Stephen Strasburg in his plastic wrapping up on the shelf. He’s far too valuable to get all filthy and broken out there on the pitcher’s mound.

      • professormaddog31 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:17 AM

        Think of what the Nats will get for him on eBay!

      • cleverbob - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:07 AM

        Gem Mint 10!!!

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:32 AM

      Maybe I’m just old school, but can’t we let a pitcher pitch?

      What does being old school have to do with anything? Many pitchers of yesteryear blew their arms out after heavy workloads, never to pitch effectively (or ever) again. Now teams try to take care of their investments. Is that really a bad thing?

      • professormaddog31 - Aug 13, 2012 at 1:29 PM

        I’m saying is that you can’t keep treating your pitchers like they are made of feathers and rubber cement. If your ace cannot go out and perform in the playoffs, what good is he to you? If you are constantly monitoring your guy for injuries or phantom injuries or “what might’ves” you’ve got a big problem. Guys since the beginning of time have had injuries, true. Some dudes wear like iron & some are made of blown glass. But you cannot toddlerproof your season.

      • 18thstreet - Aug 13, 2012 at 2:38 PM

        I would argue that the “old school” mentality had everything to do with franchises NOT caring about the long-term health of their players. If one got hurt, they’d cut him.

  16. realitypolice - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:18 AM

    I think I know why Nats fan are so willing to lie down and take this without a whimper of protest. This is all relatively new to them. They don’t know what it’s like to go decades and decades without a championship. They don’t know how one freak play can turn a series, or one poorly timed injury can derail a season. They have only a few years of futility behind them, not decades. All they see is a shining bright light of perpetual greatness at the end of the tunnel, unaware that there is a very good chance that the light is a freight train coming in the other direction. Throw away a championship in the hopes of more in the future? Good luck with that.

    • professormaddog31 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:00 AM

      You must be a long-suffering Cubs fan, too. Solidarity, bro.

      • recoveringcubsfan - Aug 14, 2012 at 7:22 AM

        I am a long-suffering Cubs fan and I think you’re both ridiculous. The Cubs have never had decent management in my lifetime and they do not care a lick about making the fans happy – only about selling beer and filling seats, which thanks to all the long-suffering, sad-sack idiots like me who pine for Wrigley Field in the summertime, they do without fail year-in, year out. The Nats don’t have a massive fan base and they need to be good for the long haul, not a one-and-done (how’s that working for the Marlins, anyway…OK, two-and-…”do”?). The history of baseball is full of teams who won once and sucked for decades afterwards – I don’t think their fans thought to themselves while they watched others go to the playoffs every year, “well, at least we won once!” I think Braves fans were a lot happier in the 1990s than, say, Twins fans (or even Marlins fans). Cubs fans exist on a special, self-inflicted plane of hell and they will never, ever understand the Nationals because that is a team where management actually seems to want to be successful at winning baseball games for many years, an utterly foreign concept on the North Side.

  17. thatyankeedude - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:29 AM

    I disagree with shutting down SS completely. I think its ok to let him skip a few starts towards the end of the season but not pitching in the playoff?? Im pissed if I’m a Nats fan with that thinking. A lot of times the outcome of a series is dependent on the first game and ur telling me u wouldn’t want one of the best pitchers in baseball pitching the first or last game of a series? I know the guy had tommy John but if his arm isn’t strong enough to give u a few playoff starts depending on how far u go, I think that may be a bigger concern.

  18. jea1978 - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:43 AM

    It’s a risk either way. You don’t just turn your back on the science and basically close your eyes and hope everything works out because someone said “flags fly forever”. What we are doing by shutting down Stras is trading postseason starts by him for postseason starts by Detwiller. I’m totally cool with that. It’s not like we’d be throwing Joe Blanton out there.
    And yeah the multiple world series comment is a bold call, but I say it happens. The 95 Braves were a fluke (seriously, someone explain that), the 08 Phillies were never THAT good (Cliff Lee wasn’t in the long term mix then), and the 86 Mets imploding due to personalities could be seen coming from miles away (see: The Bad Guys Won). Just because people did a poor job of analyzing the dynasty potential of the 08 Phils and 86 Mets doesn’t mean that we won’t have one. It just means those people suck analytically.
    My one big worry is Harp running into a wall, or Werth, and getting destroyed. Beyond that: two world series in the 2012 – 2015 span is going to happen.

    • cur68 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:02 AM

      You had me nodding right to the last sentence. Then, nu-uh. Its like you failed to comprehend your own logic. See these words “people suck analytically”?
      You wrote them. What they mean is that not ONLY do many people suck at analysis but analyzing future human events is desperately difficult. If it were easy then the stock markets would be predictable. I think the Nats have a decent chance at multiple rings, sure. BUT the course of human events makes this FAR from certain.

      • jea1978 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:15 AM

        Well yeah, I’m not betting the bank on it! I’m just saying I think it will happen.

      • cur68 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:24 AM

        Good. Me too. Congrats. Think your boys would trade Strasburg for the entire current rotation of Beaver Men pitchers? C’mon, we’d even throw in Bieber, Dion, some Ann Murray vinyl records (we have a glut of unsold Murray vinyl: you can use them as shingles or something) and Rita McNeal’s weight in Molson Canadian. Its a bargain.

      • seeinred87 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:29 AM

        I think it’s more unabashed optimism from jea than actual analysis, which I can dig.

        For me, being a fan is about believing, about hoping, even though logic would seem to say it’s unlikely or impossible.

        I’ve told people that every time I watch a game, I truly, honestly believe my team is going to win until it’s literally impossible for them to do (which in baseball isn’t until the last out is made, obviously).

        When it comes to sports, believing that something improbable will happen anyway is just part of being a fan for me, maybe because I just can’t really do it with anything else in life.

    • xmatt0926x - Aug 13, 2012 at 2:12 PM

      jea1978, You make some valid points but someone could also say you’re kind of making the point of people who say you should throw Strasburg in the playoffs. Yeah, The 2008 Phillies weren’t dynasty material to me (I’m a phillies fan), yet they did win. So did the 2010 Giants and the 2011 Cardinals. I would say none of those teams were expected to win it all. The point is that it shows how fickle the playoffs are. A few breaks here and there, a player getting hot out of nowhere and carrying his team through, a great player or whole team going cold out of nowhere. It happens and this is why teams that are inferior on paper win the whole thing sometimes. The Nats look great on paper for the next few years but to say they “should” have a couple rings in the next few years is to ignore the history of the playoffs. One pulled hamstring, one stiffening shoulder in the cold of October and all of a sudden the odds are evened. The point is you can never count on anything and you should go for it all when your chance is there. Just my 2 cents.

  19. hisgirlgotburrelled - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:03 AM

    “… Not 3! Not 4! Not 5…”

    Some Nats fans are putting the buggy in front of the horse, the world series in front of a winning season, the multiple championships in front of one championship. Cripes, it’s a big deal just to win 1!

    How can you enjoy what should be a celebration of your team accomplishing something for the first time if you’re setting expectations at multiple championships? And, really, they haven’t even accomplished anything yet.

  20. daisycutter1 - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:23 AM

    As I said in the other thread…the 2011 Boston Red Sox.

    They were going to be even better than the 1927 Yankees, I was told.

    • kinggw - Aug 13, 2012 at 12:11 PM

      What do the 2011 Red Sox have in common with the Nationals? Absolutely nothing.

      The Nats arent a veteran team of overpaid players, they are a young and hungry team that is ahead of schedule. They would be foolish to risk their future and that of Strasburg by taking the advice of armchair GMs and former players who have no front office experience. They need only look to Jordan Zimmermann and how his workload was handled coming back from TJ surgery to affirm their decision about Strasburg.

      • daisycutter1 - Aug 13, 2012 at 3:51 PM

        Silly me. A young & hungry team ahead of schedule…they’re assured WS rings two, three, even four years out.

        To expand on my comment above, if Strasburg is shut down, fans should support or object to the team’s decision solely on how that will affect his ability to pitch in the future. It’s idiocy to support a decision to shut him down this year because you’re absolutely sure the Nats will be in a position to win it all next year or in the future. There are no guarantees, ever.

        (And the Red Sox were old and hungry, FWIW. Hungry for…wait for it…fried chicken.)

  21. cshearing - Aug 13, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    Sitting one of your best players in a playoff game when he is not even injured is absolute insanity. If any team I followed tried to do so I would want someone’s head. Plus, good luck repairing the relationship in the clubhouse. You want a ring, vet? Guess you came to the wrong team. We value potential over results here.

  22. funktron2x - Aug 13, 2012 at 12:42 PM

    I love you Craig. Even if you are friends with Connor Doyle. :-)

  23. akismet-e6748cca3a16ea6e8283008d25583adc - Aug 13, 2012 at 1:20 PM

    Anyone who criticizes what the Nats plan to do with Strasburg needs to ask themselves, honestly, what they’d do in this situation:

    Team continues to ride Strasburg, letting him pitch all the way through til the end of the season (where he hits 190IP or so), then gives him 2-3 more high-leverage starts in the playoffs (running his IP total to somewhere around 210), and THEN he blows his elbow out again.

    If you can HONESTLY say that in the above situation you’d never once claim that the Nats overworked Strasburg, leading to his next injury, then you’re allowed to criticize the move. But we all know the back-seat driver/hindsight is 20-20 nature of baseball bloggers would instantly post about how the Nats should have known to shut him down, the consequences be damned.

    I’m not saying Rizzo is making baseball decisions based on the internet blogosphere (god, i hope not). I’m saying he’s taking the conservative route here, and he’s staying consistent with the decision to shut him down post TJ surgery, just as he did with Zimmermann last year. He’s been saying Strasburg will be shut down consistently from day one of spring training. No wavering, no waffling.

  24. shawndc04 - Aug 13, 2012 at 2:12 PM

    Craig: Please stop, just stop. The ship has sailed; the train has left the station; the horse is out of the barn. He will be, repeat, will be, shut down, and most of us Nationals’ fans agree with Rizzo.

  25. jon623 - Aug 15, 2012 at 1:02 AM

    “I didn’t come to D.C to win one ring… not two…not three….”

    Come on man…start with one. Even one World Series for the Nat’s would be an incredible, inspiring cinderella story of a team going from joker to king in a few short years. Could the Nationals be a dynasty in the making? Sure. Will they be? Give me ten years and I’ll get back to you.

    • jon623 - Aug 15, 2012 at 1:03 AM

      Ah dang, I didn’t see that someone made the Miami reference a few comments above me. Party foul.

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