The Cubs have approached the Nats about Jordan Zimmerman. Neither team has said much publicly about the discussions. It has been reported that the Nats have said it “would take a boatload” to pry JZimm away from Washington. I would be shocked it the Cubs do manage to pull off a trade—I’d say the chances are about 1%.
What I would not be surprised about would be the Nats trading either Strass or Gio Gonzales. They are the number 4 and 5 starters, tho the Nats have shied away from admitting that publicly.
The Nats need a second-baseman and some new bench players, along with a couple of new arms in the bullpen. They may be looking for a new “designated closer.”
That’s about it in a nutshell:)
The Zimm boys, Jordan and Ryan ganged up on the Phillies last night (June 3). What a fun game to watch!
Ryan lived up to all the ridiculous hype and actually did play left field. His first at bat said it all, as he blasted a rocket down the line in left for a double. For an encore, just in case there were one or two doubters remaining, he did the same thing into the corner in right field:) Many have said in amazement that Ryan usually shows up for Spring Training and from the first day will usually spray line drives all over the field! I believe it.
Jordan for his part found his feel and command of all his pitches again and put his problems of May in the rearview mirror! He easily pitched 8 strong innings and could have continued for a CG. Knowing how steady he is I’m confident we are in for “smooth sailing ahead” from J-Zimm.
As to what will happen with Ryan when Bryce Harper returns in mid-July, “Manager Matt’ said publicly “we will deal with that when it happens, based on how everyone is playing at that time.” I am not going to speculate therefore on something so complex, with so many variables, including possible future injuries, that will influence the team’s decision-makers.
This latest news is a huge blow to the Nats chances for fighting their way to the playoffs. Both Zim and Bryce got seriously hurt sliding headfirst.
Doug Fister and Wilson Ramos are on the road back however. It seems possible that Fister could start a game by about May 7th. Ramos is practicing “lightly.” It will likely take him several more weeks to regain the strength needed to bat with power in game conditions. But he hopes to appear in minor-league games this week.
This is the time for the bench players to step up and show us why they made the roster coming out of Spring Training! I have to admit, after hoping the Nats would trade Danny Espinosa before Spring Training, that he has made me VERY GLAD he is still here! I did not think it would be possible to make Danny a major league hitter, but I was wrong:) I’m impressed with the improved hitting thus far. And we all know he is a gold glove calibre fielder. In fact many of the usual suspects posting on the team website are calling for Danny to REPLACE Ian Desmond at SS!
Late breaking news: Zack Walters has been sent down to Syracuse as well as Taylor Jordan. Ryan Mattheus is back up here. The last time Mattheus pitched well was in 2012; I hope they don’t have to use him in a critical situation. Maybe they want to have him in case they need a “mop-up” pitcher in a game that has got out of hand:) I also hope they bring Souza back.
A.J. Burnett (2012 Season). Image courtesy of the Associated Press and msn.foxsports.com
Thank goodness! I’d been hearing rumors for about a week now that the Washington Nationals (Nats) were talking with pitcher A.J. Burnett about coming to the Nats to be in the starting rotation. Though I know A.J. is a very good pitcher (gritty, tough, lots of “heart”, etc), I was hoping it would not happen. Well, today the MLB XM radio station reported he has signed with the Phillies, so I can exhale! I’m happy for Philadelphia, they need him and he can help them a lot.
A.J. pitched for the Pirates in 2012 and played a key role in helping them make the playoffs. I watched him pitch several times and he really had everything working! I have no idea why he did not stay with Pittsburg, but he made it clear he only wanted to play for a team as close to Pennsylvania as possible, and he preferred to play in the National League. That meant he didn’t want to play for Baltimore.
So why was I hoping AJ would not end up with the Nats? Because of the shockwaves it would send through the Nats system that prides itself regarding the excellent job it does in developing talent from WITHIN! Though the Nats have their top four starting pitchers (Strasburg, Zimmermann, Gonzales, and Fister) all set, they have a healthy competition going for the fifth spot from among several young arms who have come up through the Nats minor-league system. I’m talking about Ross Detwiler, Tanner Roark, and Taylor Jordan. All three had stretches in 2012 as the fifth starter where they performed like they truly BELONGED in that role. Roark was arguably the best pitcher on the team over the August-September period! So while the above “drama” was going on I was thinking “don’t mess with success.”