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Daily Archives: June 21, 2012

Why the Washington Nationals Will Make the Playoffs in 2012

 

Thursday June 21st, 2012

Bernie Olshansky: The last time the city of Washington D.C. saw a World Series trophy was in 1924. That was the work of the Washington Senators with the help of Walter “Big Train” Johnson. Although this year’s version of the team doesn’t have a veteran baseball legend, they do have a couple budding superstars. First is Stephen Strasburg. The first-overall pick of the 2009 draft, Strasburg made an enormous impact in his first career start and most of the 2010 season, but ended up on Dr. Lewis Yocum’s table towards the end, and missed most of the 2011 season. Thankfully for the Nationals, Strasburg is back and better than ever, posting an 8-1 record and a 2.45 ERA (before Wednesday’s win versus Tampa Bay: 7IP 5H 2ER 10K and got the win). Unfortunately for the Nationals, Strasburg is on an innings limit this year to protect his young and fragile arm, so he probably won’t be available to start games come September and October.

Thankfully for the Nationals, they have a very deep pitching staff. Strasburg is backed up by Gio Gonzalez, who the Nationals traded for this winter, Jordan Zimmermann, and also newly acquired Edwin Jackson. Gonzalez has finally come into his own after having some pretty decent seasons in Oakland. He has almost identical numbers to Strasburg with an 8-3 record with a 2.52 ERA. With numbers like these at his young age, a Cy Young or two may be in his future. Gonzalez has no innings limit, so he will most definitely be the anchor to the rotation down the stretch. An option for the Nationals if they have a comfortable lead in their division (which is weak as of now… I’ll cover that later), would be to move Strasburg to the bullpen in late August or early September and have him in the rotation for the playoffs. Read the rest of this entry

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What a “Ri-Dickey-lous” Story

Thursday June 21st, 2012

John Burns:  One of the better stories in all of baseball this season has been the dominance of R.A. Dickey.

The 37 year-old pitcher has been one of the top pitchers in baseball this season with a MLB best 11 wins with a 2.00 ERA. Dickey has had success in his career with the Mets posting an ERA of 2.84 and 3.28 in 2010 and 2011. But Dickey has been more than just successful this season- he has been dominant.

Dickey has been considered as a “late bloomer” in his career. He was drafted by the Texas Rangers in the first round of the 1996 MLB draft. The Rangers discovered a missing ulnar collateral ligament in the elbow joint which caused major concerns for Texas. The Rangers still gave Dickey a chance; he debuted in 2001 and played through 2006 with Texas. In 2005, Dickey started to concentrate on throwing a knuckleball to extend his career. Read the rest of this entry

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