Nationals fans should be pretty excited about the Giants World Series victory. We all know that they had a young pitching staff, but let me remind you. Of the 4 starters that they used in the playoffs, none were older than 27 years old. Sanchez is 27, Lincecum is 26, Cain is 25, and Baumgarner is 20. A young, strong rotation WAS the key to victory, no doubt. And that should be heartening to Nationals fans because they expect to have a young, strong rotation in the next couple of seasons.
Zimmermann and Strasburg are keys to that, but another 1 or 2 guys, whoever they may be (Detwiler? Tom Milone?), must step up in order to get them close. The fact that they have Zimmermann and Strasburg, though, whatever doubts there may be about them, is a big thing, and should not be overlooked.
But it’s not just that, the Giants’ lack of offense should really be heartening. They only scored 697 runs this season. That ranks them 9th in the National League. Sure, it’s better than the Nationals’ 655 runs, ranking them 14th, but it’s not so much better. Especially not when you consider the Nats had a black hole at catcher (Pudge finished with a .640 OPS, and that was WITH a strong start). And it is realistic, not just hopeful, to expect better production out of SS and 2B that they had in 2010 thanks to maturity and growth from young players. I am betting that no more than 2 1/2 years from now, although I’d bet it’s sooner, Bryce Harper will be playing RF. The only place they look to step back is first base, so you would expect them to score more runs in the coming years. They may not be #1 in the NL, but they’ll be able to hit at the level of the Giants, probably better, pretty soon.
It also shows you that it may be ok if the Nationals aren’t totally stocked in position player prospects. With the right pitching staff, they can go out and get the position players they need to fill in any holes, and still be very successful.