Gary

2015 MLB Season Thread with Postseason Discussion

Recommended Posts

Apparently the Pirates are trying to train Aramis Ramirez to play firstbase for the remainder of the season, so I am just going to leave this here:

tsVDFod.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A couple weeks after the deadline now.

Toronto and the Mets look like they were/are the two big winners.

Both look like completely different teams now both in terms of players and energy level. They really seem to think like they have a legitamate chance to win the World Series and I would agree.

I'd put Houston and KC as the next two best teams. KC still remains the favorite IMO to take the AL but would not be if they hadn't gotten Zobrist and Cueto. Houston I think also set themselves up for a realistic shot at going all the way as well. Youth is great, but experience is usually what wins out from August on. Adding Scott Kazmir and Carlos Gomez brings a new dynamic to that team that didn't exist back in April.

Biggest loser I would say to this point is Washington. Papelbon was a good pickup but they need someone not named Bryce Harper in that lineup to and they didn't get anyone.

Now they're four and a half back and you almost have to start wondering they'll even remain in second considering how surprising the Braves have been this year.

It could very well be the case that the window for a title has shut in D.C. They could realistically make the playoffs next year with the same core, but every other team in the NL East will be just as good if not better while Washington will be just a year older.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Strasburg shutdown will haunt the Nats forever. It will go down as the Gets By Buckner of the caring-deeply-about-baseball-executives era.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That year, or even last year, I remember baseball media people saying the Nats were a budding dynasty which would own the east for a decade. Sure, they couldn't have expected the Mets to suddenly become competent, but at that time the Braves were really good themselves. It goes to show how fickle sports can be, and that you've got to win a title when the chance presents itself. I still remember hearing people say that the Tampa Bay Bucs were going to win five Super Bowls, but they were lucky to end up with one. The Bulls should have beaten the Heat and won the title in 2011, but they didn't. Then Rose become the perpetual injury machine, Noah aged beyond his year, and now we're back to 50 win, second round exits for the foreseeable future unless they're lucky enough to find a superstar drafting in the low 20's.

Anyway, I don't know what the Nats' finances are, but seeing as they gave an insane contract to Scherzer, they should have no problem finding a solid bat or two in free agency to put together a long playoff run. But that's only if they can prevent the Cardinals from Cardinaling them out again (although the Giants Cardinaled them last year).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's amazing just how anemic that Nats offense is on some (at this point, MOST) nights. They have SO much talent, but they look about as bad as the Mets did a few months ago. That really shouldn't happen as much as it has with Washington considering all the pieces they have.

As much as I absolutely hate to say it because I'm a huge fan of his, Matt Williams really doesnt seem to know what he's doing half the time. I kinda get the feeling that he's in WAY over his head.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Strasburg shutdown will haunt the Nats forever. It will go down as the Gets By Buckner of the caring-deeply-about-baseball-executives era.

The rationale behind that always bothered me. We have what could be the greatest pitcher of all-time on our hands, but if he pitches 30+ innings in September and October on top if the 160 he's already pitched, his career will be over.

If he's really that good his arm shouldn't be that fragile and if his arm is that fragile, he'll never be as good as you think he'll be.

Here we are five years since Strasburg made his debut and he's the EXACT same pitcher he was in 2010. Great stuff, low durability, injury prone, needs to learn to pitch, solid control, overall an unreliable number two/three with number one potential. Only difference now is you can probably stike "with number one potential" from the scouting report.

The expectations were a modern day Walter Johnson. I'd settle for a modern day Camilo Pascual at this point. The reality of Stephen Strasburg is that its not just the injury problems. He was never the pitcher the hype made him to be. Its just taken the rest of the baseball world this long to figure it out. My question is when did the Nationals know?

I'm not sure but my guess would be about the same time as they felt his presence on the postseason roster wasn't a priority.

I don't know if the decision to shut down Strasburg was a good one or not. I just feel the narrative the Nationals were pushing never fit what the thought process really was, which was far more complicated then an injury risk analysis.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now they're four and a half back and you almost have to start wondering they'll even remain in second considering how surprising the Braves have been this year.

The Braves are awful this year. They're ten games below .500, they're offense is worse than last year and they have no bullpen.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

pmoehrin is like the best all-killer-no-filler baseball poster on the board. He's what I aspire to be as I post about barfing up clove-flavored candy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Red Sox manager John Farrell has been diagnosed with lymphoma. He'll be out the remainder of the year receiving treatment.

http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/13438817/john-farrell-boston-red-sox-manager-diagnosed-lymphoma-sidelined-indefinitely

It's been an all around bad season for the Red Sox, and now they get this news. Terribly unfortunate, and I wish him a speedy recovery.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Following up on pmoehrin's comments on the Nats and Strasburg...

Besides the reason he mentions, I have enjoyed seeing the Nats general struggles ever since then, because they deserve it for their hubris. When they shut down Strasburg, who was, at worst, their 2nd best pitcher in that 2012 season, they basically were saying that they were so sure of their window of contention, that they could afford to punt away a season where they were on pace to finish with the best record in the National League (which they eventually did; 98 wins) and "try again next year". And, sure, did they have every chance of still succeeding without Strasburg? Sure. Just like the Cardinals succeeded the year prior without their best pitcher, too. Difference being, of course, that St. Louis didn't have their best pitcher available because he blew his g-ddamn arm out, and Washington didn't have their 2nd best starting pitcher available because they didn't want to run the risk of him hurting himself again.

To follow up on their act of punting 2012, they had a wildly disappointing 2013 season where they spent more time in the second half sitting under .500 and never threatening for any playoff position at all, then a successful 2014 season that ended in first round disappointment because THE PLAYOFFS ARE CHAOTIC AND THE ONLY WAY TO EXPECT TO WIN ANYTHING IS TO MAXIMIZE EVERY CHANCE YOU GET, and now, 2015, where Strasburg looks like a broken version of himself, and they're sitting only two games over .500 (likely one game over in another hour), 4.5 games out of the NL East lead to the next team "poised to dominate the decade" with one really awesome young rotation (when Jon Niese is in danger of being squeezed out of a rotation in 2016, you're loaded), and 7.5 games out of the second wild card spot. Ever since the Nats punted away 2012, all they literally have to show for it is one solitary playoff victory in three seasons to follow. Yippee. What an accomplishment.

They deserve every bit of their underachievement they've had since then. God willing, the Mets won't blow the NL East this time, because I'm firmly in the camp now that sees them as the best team in that division. And even if they weren't, the Nats can still go sit on a fork.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Or History's Greatest Monsters could have beaten Washington in 2012 anyway, only Strassburg's fragile arm would have even more mileage on it. Welcome to CCSLC, home of the Monday Morning QB and the November GM.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

8 straight.

14 of their last 15.

081415_Strop_reaction_med_res_l84ik4fd.g

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Or History's Greatest Monsters could have beaten Washington in 2012 anyway, only Strassburg's fragile arm would have even more mileage on it. Welcome to CCSLC, home of the Monday Morning QB and the November GM.

I'm neither as good at finding old posts of mine as Ad is, nor could I really care because yay lazy, but one quick search finds this. Look at the time stamp:

The Washington Nationals are 77-46, 7 games up in their division (and 10-4 against the Braves), have an offense that is rounding into form, and the best pitching staff in baseball.

Furthermore, the American League has been quite stricken by parity this year - the World Series is as up for grabs as ever. I think only the Reds are near the Nationals level in the NL.

So tell me, once again, how they can logically support shutting down their best pitcher? They are not guaranteed to be this good in 2013/14/15 - they have a chance for the title, they've gotta take it. Flags Fly Forever.

I can't speak for anyone else, but lets not pretend that I wasn't saying much of the same stuff right when it happened. Using hindsight is one of my biggest pet peeves, and I make every effort to keep my views consistent before and after something happens. If I'm wrong, either I'll cower and never mention it, say I was wrong, or, most of the time, invoke my "process vs. result" ideology that I base my entire thought process around. You know, :censored: , sometimes bad processes yield good results. Most of the time, they don't. Shutting down Stephen Strasburg in 2012 was a bad process, If I were a Nats fan, knowing how 2012 ended, I would be sick thinking about the "what if" there. Self-inflicted wounds hurt the most.

Credits to McCarthy and Roman - they were on this from the beginning, too. Not sure who else was. I can't say I care to read too much from a three-year-old thread.

(As an asides - "They are not guaranteed to be this good in 2013/14/15." *Pats self on back until elbow breaks*)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Or History's Greatest Monsters could have beaten Washington in 2012 anyway, only Strassburg's fragile arm would have even more mileage on it. Welcome to CCSLC, home of the Monday Morning QB and the November GM.

That's the chance you have to take when you're contending for a championship. You can't play the long game on multiple championships when, like you said, not even a first-round series is guaranteed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My whole point with Strasburg, was consider the possibility that the Nats decision to shut him down, wasn't simply a case of a team trying to protect their star prospect at the expense of losing out on a possible World Series title run.

Keep in mind, Strasburg averaged less than six innings a start in 2012 and had an ERA of 3.68 from May on. Based on that, could you say conclusively that Strasburg was really that much better of an option to have then either Ross Detwiler or Edwin Jackson?

Even keeping in mind the injury issues, his age and his limited experience, does that really sound like someone that's going to become one of if not the most dominant pitchers of this generation? Its possible the answer to that still could have been yes (and still can be) but more likely the hype of Stephen Strasburg isn't the reality of Stephen Strasburg.

What if the rationale simply was Strasburg shouldn't be on the playoff roster because he's not one of the four best starters on the team, and we don't want to move someone with no relief experience at the Major League level to the bullpen coming into the playoffs? We'll push the injury storyline because it makes sense and its not entirely untrue, But the reality of the situation is, we just don't think he's that good and if were looking at him as a potential future trade piece and if I'm the Nationals GM, I rather have the rationale out there be we're looking to trade Stephen Strasburg because we're scared off by the injury risk, rather than we're looking to trade Stephen Strasburg because we think he's one of most overrated players in the game and if you trade for him you're not getting what you think you're getting.

Would the Nats have gone the distance with Stephen Strasburg on the team in 2012? Unfortunately the only answer I can give to that with any degree of accuracy is I don't know.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

maybe that's true, but that's getting a little too conspiratorial for me.

Even if they didn't think he was good enough for the playoff roster I'm still irked by how the Nationals handled it. Paraphrasing: "his arm'll fall off if he pitches any high stress playoff innings" Because you can totally know that.

"we want to preserve his future and we know we'll have many more playoff opportunities that we can use him". Maybe they didn't actually say they'd have more chances in the coming years, but that was the impression. It was arrogant and insulting. You can never guarantee the future and you have to do everything you can to win when the opportunity presents itself. If he'd gotten injured during those playoffs well then at least you tried. Bird in the hand and all that.

They made the playoffs last year and Strasburg gave up 1 earned run in 5 innings and the Nats lost that game. So they punted on 2012 for 5 innings in 2014 and they're not making the postseason this year either.

In game 5 of the 2012 NLDS the Nats were up 6-0 on the Cardinals, went into the 9th with a two run lead, blew that lead and gave up 4 runs in the 9th. I don't remember that game because after the Reds blew their series I was too depressed to watch any more baseball that year, but I think bullpen experience is largely overrated. You're telling me they couldn't have used Strasburg for one of those very precious outs they couldn't make? Strasburg wasn't good enough for the pitching staff that accomplished that feat? I beg to differ.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Red Sox manager John Farrell has been diagnosed with lymphoma. He'll be out the remainder of the year receiving treatment.

http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/13438817/john-farrell-boston-red-sox-manager-diagnosed-lymphoma-sidelined-indefinitely

It's been an all around bad season for the Red Sox, and now they get this news. Terribly unfortunate, and I wish him a speedy recovery.

While I do wish the guy a speedy recovery, I wonder if this was some sort of omen because all Boston has done was tear apart the poor ass M's these last two days... 15 runs last night and 19 runs today.

I know Seattle isn't that great, but good gravy man! Let off the gas... you won.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.