A big day for the Nats yesterday, the all-important 36th win of the season. Ok, there’s actually nothing I can think of that’s so important about 36, but it was a good game all around. This time they didn’t have to come back, thanks to back to back HRs in the first from Zimmerman and Dunn. And of course, this allows me to continue in the Zimmerman March to 30 HR gallery. In honor of his 22nd HR this year, a couple of 22s (I think my Dad will like the first one).

Allie Reynolds22.jim-palmer

Back to normal things

Or at least things besides my weird fascination with Zimmerman’s March to 30 HR. Lannan threw yet another quality start. That puts him at 97 this season. Actually, he’s got 15, which is pretty high. There are about 20 guys in the NL with 15 or more, but the most ANYONE in the NL has is 18, so he couldn’t expect to be much better. He’s the Ace of this team, and if Zimmermann comes back strong, and Strasburg gets signed… It’s suddenly an impressive 3 pitchers. I don’t want to get too excited, but let’s just say my mind is aglow with whirling, transient nodes of thought careening through a cosmic vapor of invention.

Elijah Dukes, meanwhile hasn’t been getting hits since he came back. But I like what I see from him. He’s actually hitting the ball hard, and for the second game in a row he’s seen the second highest number of pitches for all Nats batters. Don’t get too down on his return yet. As for what people think he might end up doing the rest of the year, I actually asked, in a chat, Baseball Propectus writer and fantasy guy, Marc Normandin about Dukes:

Charlie (Bethesda): Thoughts on Elijah Dukes for the second half of this season? I watched the game last night and he hit the ball hard, saw like a thousand pitches, and looked generally like the Dukes of second half of 2008.

Marc Normandin: Must be because I dropped him in my league! If he’s once again patient and hitting the ball hard, then there’s no reason not to like him–hell, I liked him a lot at the beginning of the season for those same reasons–but I would like to see him replicate that a bit before I make room on my roster for him (again).

So if you’re looking at what he’s capable of, it’s not only Nats fans that think he may be able to hit. They’re just gonna have to sit in the back of the bandwagon.

Newly arrived Jorge Padilla, 29 years old, after 12 years in the minors, arrived to the Nats big boy team yesterday. Just imagine what that guy must be feeling. He got in the game as a pinch hitter for Lannan, and lined out to RF. Pretty sweet day for him, I’m sure.

By Charlie