Saturday, August 25, 2007

Even My Boy!! Pitched Well

That was some pretty fine pitching--Too bad it happened for Washington with the score already 5-1, Colorado with the lead. Our Manager Manny Acta called on Chris Schroder to put out a bases loaded, no out situation against The Colorado Rockies--and he delivered--BIG TIME. Inheriting a mess courtesy of Tim Redding in the 5th--Schroder continued to show some promise. A whipping fastball and the ability to place the baseball all over and around the plate. Movement on a rising fastball, not seen by many pitchers for Our Washington Nationals.

Our Number 45 struck out Brad Hawpe swinging--got Ryan Spilborghs on a first pitch liner to Ryan Zimmerman. Then, on a full count, crossed up Yorvit Torrealba on a beautiful off speed pitch--tailing away. This Man's got some stuff. And, continued to show promise the very next inning. Schroder's second inning of work--the Sixth Inning of this affair--which was just as delightful. Another 1-2-3 frame that included a nice strong "K" of The Rockies young stud shortstop--Troy Tulowitzki to end it.

Where exactly has this 29 year old been hiding for so long? Chris Schroder's got a live arm--what's taken him so long to develop? When Manny Acta sent him out for a third inning of work in the 7th this evening--he was as strong as ever. Don Sutton stating on MASN that Chris has CLOSER MATERIAL. Remember last season on August 19th, 2006, at Citizens Bank Park, when Schroder struck out five of six straight Phillies--including Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and Pat Burrell in a row?

It's been well documented that Schroder does not pitch with the game on the line. Our Manager has yet to trust him so far this season. Maybe its time to find out what he can do. 2007 is all about finding parts--why not discover Chris' true talents? If he's good enough--value might be attained--whether for Washington on the field, or through a trade to another team.

Yeah--tonight wasn't much of a ballgame. Our Washington Nationals were shutdown by Rookie Rockie Pitcher--Ubaldo Jimenez. Just three hits over seven complete innings. Never did Washington really threaten. Not even MY BOY!! Jorge Julio could blow this one for Colorado. Now, how many of you were hoping for a reversal of last night's debacle in that 9th when Jorge came trotting out??!! I was--that's a FOR SURE.

Unfortunately--Julio did the job at Coors Field this evening. The Rockies 5, Our Washington Nationals 1--The Final Score.

All of which got The African Queen and I off on another tangent discussing Baltimore and Washington as Professional Sports Towns. With this ballgame all but over--we began switching back and forth to The Washington Redskins/Baltimore Ravens game on Channel 9. Being an innocent bystander--Sohna wanted to know why Washington Fans have never showed the GREAT ANIMOSITY toward The Ravens (Cleveland Browns) moving to Baltimore, like Orioles Fans and their Owner have showed toward Our Washington Nationals move from Montreal.

My only answer to her is that NO ONE IN DC--BEGRUDGES Baltimore for having their own Professional Teams. Everyone here realized the traumatic instances surrounding The Baltimore Colts moving to Indianapolis. A situation that The NFL, at that time--showed no backbone, to at the very least--allow The City of Baltimore to retain The Colts name and Its History. Plus, the granting to Charm City of a New Franchise at a later date. The Colts being allowed to move was shame for the sport. A very proud Franchise was taken away--in gut wrenching fashion.

Respect shown by DC Area Residents upon The Ravens arrival--quickly forgotten by Fans of Baltimore--and one certain Owner of The Orioles. Really, that's the whole difference. Baltimore Fans must have long forgotten how disappointing it was for Our Nation's Capital to lose its Washington Senators, so many years previously. Even a bad team--had a following then. Legions of Baseball Fans left with no Major League Team for over 30 seasons in The Most Important City in the World.

That's also a shame. And just our random thought, after a less than stellar ballgame in Denver.

Tonight's defeat shows how important last night's loss can play out on a team's fate. Having now dropped two straight, after winning 3 of 4 in Houston--there is a distinct possibility Our Washington Nationals may be swept tomorrow in Colorado. Limping to Los Angeles to play the very competitive Dodgers--this puts a potential .500 or winning roadtrip in serious jeopardy. All this worry--due to one very bad 9th inning last night.

Tonight's InGame Photos--(AP) David Zalubowski


Jim H said...

I have great resentment towards Baltimore getting the Ravens...but not for any DC-based reasons.

I spent my college years and formative professional years in Cleveland. (Insert Cleveland joke here...ha-ha funny.) When you live in Cleveland, you live and die with the teams...Tribe, Browns, Cavaliers. I was there during the Brian Sipe/Bernie Kosar years. Loved Bernie!

Fast forward several years, and I'm living in DC. And hear that Cleveland is losing its team to Baltimore...a city that had it's prior team stolen...and had no problem stealing a team in return!

Of course, most all of my animosity was saved for Art Modell. When the Tribe was building it's new baseball stadium, the city talked with Modell about doing the same for the Browns. He said, "No...he wanted to remain in Cleveland Municipal Stadium...the Mistake on the Lake." Years later, after Jacob's Field was built, Modell saw how revitalized things became and wanted in...after the fact. Rather than continue the conversation, Modell took the team to Baltimore.

Now again...I don't begrudge Baltimore their professional teams. I'm just disappointed that nobody mentions the fact that these people, so devastated as the vans rolled out of town with their Colts, had no problem subjecting another city to the same pain. Browns games were always sold out to a rabid fan base, at least until the lame duck season, after the move had been announced.

I have always hated the Ravens and Art Modell. That Browns franchise has never recovered.

Though I disdain, I do respect. The Ravens have been expertly run and are a great franchise. In good part due to one of my favorite players...Ozzie Newsome.

Anonymous said...

SBF, I completely agree with you about Schroeder. He and Saul were the only bright spots in tonight's game. I would love to see Chris spell Ayala or Rauch one of these times when we're winning a game, just to see how he handles it.

Jim, I can totally understand your feelings about the Ravens. Unfortunately, we Nats fans are also the beneficiaries of another city's loss, so we're in pretty much the same position as Ravens fans in Baltimore. Both cities lost a team to another city, and both cities ended up getting replacement teams that another city's fans lost. It would have been nice for Baltimore and Washington to have been awarded expansion franchises, but neither city is going to reject the teams they have due to the unfortunate circumstances that brought them here.

An Briosca Mor said...

There's one thing you can say about Baltimore fans. When their team is taken away from them, they remain loyal to their city and don't adopt the team of a city thirty miles down the road, like so many DC fans did by embracing the Orioles after the Senators left. (Of course I was one of them, at least until I ultimately realized that by supporting the Orioles we were actually making it less likely that we'd ever get a team of our own.) When the Colts left Baltimore, NO ONE in Baltimore became a Redskins fan. They hated the Redskins when they had no team of their own, and they hate them today. You'll never see someone in Redskins attire up in Baltimore, but you see lots of people wearing Ravens jerseys in DC. I think part of the reason Baltimoreans don't like DC people is because there are so many DC people who put Baltimore down as a second class city, but who are still oh so happy to embrace the Orioles and Ravens. There's an inherent phoniness in such collective behavior, which is what I think turns Baltimore people against DC.

And Jim, I feel your pain and think you have a legitimate grievance against Modell. But don't be too hard on the fans of Baltimore. True, they were happy to take Cleveland's team, but they also knew that part of the deal was that Cleveland would get another team - something they didn't get when the Colts were stolen from them. I bet Baltimore would have been just as happy if they got the expansion team and Cleveland got to keep the Browns.

Brandon said...

The stated reasons for lack of animosity toward the Ravens in previous comments are correct.

There's also the fact that the Redskins, unlike the Orioles, stood to lose NOTHING by another team appearing so close by. In the NFL, there are only eight home games per year so every single game is a sellout. The Redskins were going to sell out FedEx or RFK regardless of whether or not there was a team in Baltimore- the same could NOT be said for the Orioles. In fact, the NFL is so popular that you could probably put a third franchise in this region and still sell out all three. Baseball is not that way.

Angelos's concern about losing fans and attendance was legitimate. Lots of folks from the D.C. area adopted the Orioles as THE local team. As much as I hate to admit it, I would have had the same objections were I Peter Angelos.

It would be interesting to see some hard reporting done on the actual outcome of Angelos's claims of lost attendance now that the third year of MLB teams in DC and Baltimore are almost finished. Maybe a good rainy day post on The Curly W.

Jim H said...


While I agree there may some hypocrisy in my glee at gaining the Nats at Montreal's expense while condemning the Cleveland/Baltimore transaction, there is a key difference.

Up to the day Modell sold the franchise, every game was a sellout. The mainstream fan base for the Browns in Cleveland was huge and far from non-supportive.

Nitpicking, perhaps...but it makes me feel better for the rationalization. ;)

Jim H said...


I hear you on the fandom in Baltimore. I'm not really hard on them. It's primarily Modell and the way the move was done. Remember, when Modell and Baltimore announced the move, there was no indication at all of Cleveland receiving another team. Not until lawsuits were filed did any kind of discussion even commence regarding halting Baltimore's use of the Browns name, colors and history, not to mention receiving a team in return.

A legal settlement was reached in February of 2006 assuring Cleveland of its history and a future team. (The move to Baltimore had been announced in November 2005.)

Until that agreement, Baltimore was getting a team and Cleveland was simply losing one of it's most identifying icons...for better or for worse.

It's okay, though. I remain convinced that one day, Cleveland will again have a professional football team. ;)

Anonymous said...

"Tonight's defeat shows how important last night's loss can play out on a team's fate. Having now dropped two straight, after winning 3 of 4 in Houston--there is a distinct possibility Our Washington Nationals may be swept tomorrow in Colorado. Limping to Los Angeles to play the very competitive Dodgers--this puts a potential .500 or winning roadtrip in serious jeopardy. All this worry--due to one very bad 9th inning last night."

SBF -- Am I missing something? "All this worry--due to one very bad 9th inning [August 24]." I agree the inning was gruesome, Cordero clearly went down in flames, and I'd expect the team to find it somewhat demoralizing. But yesterday, Redding had a subpar start AND the offense produced one run. Hanrahan gave up 9 runs and walked the Rockies pitcher twice today.

Am I understanding you to say that this team has so little resilience one bad inning can undermine the pitching and nullify the offense for DAYS? That doesn't make sense to me, because it doesn't fit this team's character at all. This team's character is to battle until every out is recorded.

As I write this, it's the middle of the 8th, the Rockies lead 9 to 5, the Nats have come back from a 9 to 1 score, and they've made two defensive plays in this game that have drawn applause from the ROCKIES fans. I won't predict the outcome, but whatever it is, the Nationals not going to be limping into LA.

Screech's Best Friend said...

Baseball tends to turn on a dime. I am not
saying they are quitters. But, that poor inning set
up a bad weekend, and completely changed the
atmosphere in their clubhouse. You could see it in
their play. Our team is fragile and when something
goes drastically wrong they cannot always just turn
things around--like many of the better teams can do.
Our Young talent hinders their own ability to fight
back quickly, at times--because they are still
learning. Its all a part of the process of developing
into a better team. And, Growing Up-becoming better ballplayers

Edward J. Cunningham said...

Just one quick comment. With all due respect to my brother-in-law, I hope the Colorado Rockies have as much success against the Nats in Nationals Park as we have had the past three years in Coors Field.