Nationals Today – 1/24

Untitled-2THIS MORNING…

The Washington Nationals get a lot of flack for what they do wrong, so in an effort to put a positive spin on the season moving forward, I decided to dig up some of the things the Nats did right in 2010. So here are some quick bullet points on the highlights of 2010:

Despite tying for the league lead in errors for the Nationals League, the Nationals finished in the top five in the National League in UZR (6.8).

The above UZR rating was most influenced by their strong Range Rating, in which they ranked fourth in the National League.

While it drove some fans crazy, the club finished fourth in the National League in stolen bases in 2010.

Nationals pitchers let up a lot of hits in 2010, but they didn’t give many free passes, ranking fifth in the National League in BB/9 .

Nats Went After Loney

According to Nick Cafardo, the Nats made a strong push for James Loney this winter before signing first-baseman Adam LaRoche. Loney, 26, hit .267/.329/.395 last season after posting a career .288/.348/.436. His low production last year may not have been indicative of his talent, but LaRoche’s 2010 season was unquestionably better at the plate.

LaRoche in the end is probably a better and smarter deal for the Nationals to hold the first base position down until Rizzo can figure out the future.

Hot Reads…

Red Sox are willing to trade their closer Jonathan Papelbon…he will likely get a raise to $12 million this winter…

Adam Kilgore looks at the Nationals desperate need for strikeouts from their pitching staff…

Adam Dunn was named to the Jayson Stark  all-underrated team…but so did Ryan Zimmerman…

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