Monday, April 20, 2009

Not Too Soon to Stink

The start of a baseball season is deceptive, but most certainly for players and teams who are doing well. Ian Kinsler will probably have a great year if he stays healthy, but he's not going to hit .460, as he is now. On the other hand, bad starts can turn into demotions for individuals or just long, long summers for teams and their fans.

First, take Kyle Farnsworth. (The Royals would no doubt add a Henny Youngman-esque “please.”) He's made five appearances for Kansas City out of the bullpen this year, three of them disasters. The first time he pitched when it counted, he inherited a 2-1 lead in the eighth inning, and gave up three runs. They lost. After two decent outings, he then entered a game that was tied, 2-2, and promptly gave up another three runs. Yesterday, he was called on in the ninth inning of a tie game and gave up a game-winning home run to the first batter he faced.

The only thing that keeps Farnsworth from being the biggest goat of the early season is the existence of what experts like to call the Washington Nationals. They're 1-10, and have achieved that mark -- especially recently -- with a real dramatic flair for incompetence. Over the weekend, the Nats actually played well against the best team in baseball thus far, the Marlins. The only thing that kept it from being a really successful weekend for D.C. was the sport's stubborn insistence that games last nine innings.

Friday night, the Nats were up 2-1. They gave up a run in the ninth, and lost 3-2 in 10 innings. That was a mere warm-up. Saturday, they were leading 6-3 in the ninth. They gave up three in the ninth and lost 9-6, again in extras. Sunday, the dark shadow of the ninth inning found them with a 4-3 lead. Which, for them, is something like being down 10 for an average team. Naturally, they gave up four runs and lost, 7-4.

The team can't even spell its name right.


Blogger travisneal said...

Yea yea, they're a bad team, good job kicking a horse when down. A horse that is fun to kick, even when down, is the Yankees. Give that a try, you'll feel better.

While no longer in DC, they are still my NL team to cheer for, if for no other reason than their stinkiness ought to insulate me from criticism and claims of band-wagonning.

Enjoying ASWOBA and Secondpass.


Not always cranky, just waiting on Pulitzer announcement looking for a cause to champion.

1:59 PM  
Blogger David said...

Don't get me started on Farnsworth. The Royals are 7-5, and he has managed to earn three of those losses in a mere 3.1 innings pitched. But I put the blame squarely on manager Trey Hillman, who keeps bringing him in with the game on the line, despite having infinitely better options in Joakim Soria, Juan Cruz and Robinson Tejeda.

On the plus side, how about the complete game shutout Zack Greinke threw against the Rangers in Arlington? Your Cy Young prediction for him isn't looking too bad right now.

7:11 PM  

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