Since the New Year has just begun, at least this is the first full week, it’s time to catch up on some of the things that are going on with the team.

  • They are allegedly still pursuing Adam Dunn. Dunn would do interesting things to the roster. I think the best option is to play him at first, Willingham in LF, Milledge in CF, and Dukes in RF. Perhaps, if he really sucks at first, move him to the OF and let Willingham play first. It warrants the question, what do you do with Nick Johnson, in his last year of his contract, assuming he’s able to play? Reports from the Nats, however, say that Dunn probably will end up wanting to sign elsewhere, as he’s still a relatively hot commodity.
  • Orlando Hudson is also on the list. The have a starting 2B allegedly, but Hudson is a dynamic personality and wouldn’t be a bad pickup assuming they aren’t sure Anderson Hernandez is a viable starter. I’m certainly not sure. Hudson can still hit relatively well for his position, and despite a drop in his fielding last year, he is probably still better than average. Not bad if it’s a 2 or 3 year deal.
  • Neither Hudson or Dunn are long term solutions for this team, although Dunn, being a power hitter who walks alot, can’t field, and has no speed, probably isn’t going to see those skills diminish for a while. So a longer contract with him wouldn’t be awful. Both are stopgaps, and potential trade bait at some point, but I don’t see a problem with this as long as they don’t keep future stars out of the lineup and cost draft picks. Some people don’t see the difference between winning 60 games and 80 games, as you still aren’t going to the playoffs, but I think most fans do. It’s important for revenues and fan interest for the team to be at least respectable on your journey to being good.
  • Teixeira signed with the team that he rooted for when he was growing up, that had his boyhood idol on it, and that also, oh yeah, offered him the most money and had one of the best chances of winning now. I’m shocked.
  • According to Chico Harlan at the WaPo, the rotation next year will be, barring any changes: Lannan, Olsen, and Balester, as expected, plus Daniel Cabrera, which is also not a surprise. But the 5th is allegedly Jordan Zimmermann. I’m surprised he will be up that quick, but I can’t argue. Shawn Hill has a chance to make it as well. That is all probably subject to change depending on how the spring goes (like if Cabrera walks everyone and Hill looks healthy)
  • Speaking of Hill, apparently alot of his arm issues may have been not-completely-surprising complications or lingering effects from Tommy John surgery. The thought now is that if he is over those issues, he’s over them for good. I’d love to think of having a healthy Shawn Hill for a whole season.
  • Baseball America is scheduled to release their Nats top 10 prospects list, which also contains the projected 2012 lineup. I’ll compare it to my 2013 lineup soon.
  • The second World Baseball Classic is this spring- I’ll probably have some take on it without any full scale number crunching.
  • Ryan Zimmerman is still our best overall player. If nothing in the lineup changes, I think a full season of Dukes may have people calling him the best offensive player on the team.
  • Pitchers and catchers report in 38 days. This time they listened to me – the team’s Valentine’s Day present to us will be starting to play baseball again.

That’s all for now, there will be more numbersy stuff soon enough, once we get real lineups and what not. Next though, we gotta look at that 2012/2013 lineup. There’s nothing more exciting to a Nats fan!

By Charlie