Friday, July 28, 2017
Well, it's 4 months into the season, and the Washington Nationals are still one of the best teams in baseball. I report this as if people were expecting a change. While some other competitors have risen to power, like the Dodgers and Astros, the Nats have remained one of the main threats in baseball right now. Even if Stephen Strasburg is missing a week, even if Trea Turner and Jayson Werth are still injured, and even if the bullpen had to be rebuilt from a few acquisitions. They're still fantastic.
The core of the lineup hasn't been harmed. Bryce Harper, Daniel Murphy, Anthony Rendon and Ryan Zimmerman are still fantastic, and Matt Wieters has been holding down a nice force at catcher. Even Michael Taylor, perpetually pegged as the backup outfielder, and Brian Goodwin have been having a great year in the absence of Werth, Eaton and Turner. Yes, the team has needed to rely on a ton of offensive backups, but the depth of the organization is showing, as the backups are definitely helping the team stay in first.
The pitching staff isn't really a problem either. Scherzer's still the best pitcher in the NL. Gio Gonzalez is having another really nice season. Tanner Roark is doing a well enough job. AJ Cole had a nice start before heading back to the minors. They even got Edwin Jackson back to fill the void until Strasburg comes back next week, and he hasn't been doing too badly.
The bottom line is that this team leads the league in disaster preparedness. They've lost two staple outfielders, and their staple shortstop, and they're still the best. This could mean a lot heading toward the end of the season.
Coming Tonight: Closer for the surprisingly still good Minnesota Twins.