August 22, 2017

Roger Peckinpaugh, Joe Cronin…Ian Desmond?

March 11, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

During the two decades when the Washington Nationals fielded quality Major League teams (1912-1933), the infield was invariably anchored by excellent shortstop. Clark Griffith, as manager and owner of the team during those years, valued the gritty ballplayer who could do it all and his on-the-field leaders included such great players as George McBride, Roger […]

The Bull-Moose Juju

April 25, 2013 by · 2 Comments 

As the first month of the baseball season drew to a close in 2012, the Gio Gonzalez trade looked like an inspiration. Stephen Strasburg was back and the Nationals had the best pitching in the National League. Davey Johnson was looking for offense and summoned Bryce Harper. Everything Mike Rizzo touched in 2012 turned to […]

Can You Over-hype the Nationals?

March 6, 2013 by · 3 Comments 

Bryce Harper has put on 10 pounds to hike his playing weight for 2013 to 230.  I remember Jim Callis at Baseball America coming on our podcast a few years ago and quoting some scouts who believe Harper will one day have more of an Adam Dunn footprint than a Mickey Mantle one.  I don’t […]

The Kid from the Old School

May 24, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Whether or not the Philadelphia Phillies rebound from their slow start to the 2012 season, remains to be seen. But if we are watching the changing of the guard in the NL East, then the May 6 evening that Cole Hamels plunked Bryce Harper, claiming it was “Old School,” will certainly be seen as a […]

Why Davey Johnson Is So Unhappy

May 10, 2012 by · 4 Comments 

One thing about Bryce Harper’s steal of home a few days ago, it brought a smile to the face of his manager Davey Johnson. Johnson has otherwise found too little to smile about during the first month of the 2012 season, despite the overall good performance of his team. Davey was a hitter. That is […]

Someone Please Tell Cole Hamels Older Isn’t Necessarily Better

May 7, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

With one pitch and a few poorly chosen words, Cole Hamels proved two things on Sunday; older is not necessarily better, and there are no intelligence requirements to make $15 million a year. As reported in a story by ESPN, Hamels hit Washington Nationals super rookie Bryce Harper with a pitch and then proudly told […]

Harper Means Hustle and the Giant Combo Size

May 7, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Bryce Harper is only a few days into his major league career. It is like a movie and the credits are still playing over the first few frames as we are introduced to the action. And maybe it is too early for the critics to assess what they are seeing, but there can be little […]

History in the Making, Or Just Another Ballgame?

April 30, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Bryce Harper and Stephen Strasburg were taken in the amateur draft twelve months apart. Each was a Boras client deemed difficult to sign and likely to command a record signing bonus. Each was acclaimed as a unique talent well worth whatever it took. The fact that they came in succeeding years was deemed extremely rare. […]

Harper-Less Hagerstown Suns Open with a Flourish

April 6, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

A very respectable crowd of 2,078 turned out on a very chilly Opening Night, to watch the Bryce Harper-less Hagerstown Suns play the West Virginia Power in Sally League action on Thursday. Still, the contrast between this year and last year when 6,017 came to watch Harper’s minor league debut was stark to the point […]

Brad Peacock, Selig Man with Upside Heart

May 11, 2011 by · 3 Comments 

Brad Peacock was taken in the 41st round of the 2006 draft as a “draft and follow” pick by the Washington Nationals. For Washington the 2006 draft was a disaster. Conducted when the team was still under management by Bud Selig and MLB, Inc., it might serve as a tutorial on all of the things […]

Bryce Harper Gets It

April 6, 2011 by · 2 Comments 

Bryce Harper is not only extremely talented, he gets it. For the rest of us, our talent ran out at some point, whether it was Little League or high school or college or even the minor leagues. If the game abandoned us, however, we never abandoned it; and so we talk about it and write […]

Any Fish’ll Bite If You Got Good Bait

November 11, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

The Nationals continue to make notable progress in building their minor league organization.  Rated consistently in the bottom tier since the move from Montreal in 2005, the system is on the rise, but an acid test awaits. GM Mike Rizzo wants to trade for a starting pitcher. The rumor mill has the Nationals looking at […]

Nyjer Needs Some Love

September 4, 2010 by · 4 Comments 

After two whopping suspensions, dumping on Nyjer Morgan at this point should be half the distance to the goal for egregious piling on.  The guy needs some love big time.  So pardon me while I swim against the tide of the conventional wisdom–a concept born and raised here in Washington, DC. I will start at […]

Taking the Challenge, Both Harper and the Nationals

August 17, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Bryce Harper’s new teammates challenged the young man to fish or cut bait in the days before the August 16 signing deadline.  Stephen Strasburg said, “If he doesn’t want to play here, we don’t want him here.”   Ryan Zimmerman was almost as skeptical, saying in effect that he saw more maturity and character in […]

Deadline Day for Draftees is Quickly Approaching

August 5, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

With a mere 11 days to go until the deadline for 2010 draftees to reach agreement with their respective teams there are a number of interesting stories worth monitoring. As of this morning, 25 of the first 50 picks have yet to sign a contract – including 7 of the first 10. The surprising part […]

Opportunity Costs Will Dictate Modest Harper Bonus

June 20, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Nationals fans, management and players are all seeing just what a great and phenomenal talent can do to transform a team.  Strasburg left everyone breathless for more, but although some see Bryce Harper as Strasburg, Part Deux, few believe Harper will get as big a bonus for signing in Washington.  Opportunity cost analysis says the […]

Washington Is a Baseball Town (Again)

June 8, 2010 by · 2 Comments 

At the top of the seventh inning the crowd began the chant, “Let’s Go Stras-burg” to the same cadence that fans in DC have grown tired of listening to from Philly, Dodger, Red Sox and just about anywhere fans.  But this chant was all DC and it grew and built.  “Let’s Go Stras-burg” the entire […]

Goldstein Sounds Alarm in Harper’s House of Charm

April 25, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Kevin Goldstein took aim at Bryce Harper’s imposing rep this week in an article at Baseball Prospectus.com about his “makeup.”   The amateur draft is counting down and Harper is more and more the only viable first choice. Will the alarm bells spook the Nationals?  Is character as defining a factor for the rebuilding Washington […]

Weighing Bryce Harper

March 8, 2010 by · 3 Comments 

Bryce Harper had no where to go but down after being hyped as Lebron James last June.  Questions arose after uneven moments in his play last summer, then again at the start of the college season.  Nationals GM, Mike Rizzo, who will pick first in the amateur draft in three months, must decide whether the […]