Tag Archives: Cristian Guzman

Nationals Beast (and least) of the Week

This is tough. The Nationals have been playing some pretty bad abysmal baseball lately. But there must be one person who gets the Beast of the Week honor, and we give this week’s award to…

Elijah Dukes, OF. The man who has been so troubled off the field has found lots more trouble on the field this year, batting below the Mendoza line. But Dukes seems to be prospering in the two-hole (give credit to Manny Acta here). For the week, Elijah hit .286, .375, .571 with 5 RBI and a home run (a game-winner Thursday night against St. Louis). He certainly has a lot of upside, and any offensive production from the replacement right-fielder will be a huge boost to the team with the worst combined batting average in the majors (.231).

Runners-Up: Jesus Flores, Cristian Guzman, Saul Rivera

The Nationals least of the week is…

Jason Bergmann, RHP. We thought that Bergmann had turned the corner after a terrible start to the season, but he reverted to his old self Friday night against the Giants, giving up 5 earned runs on 10 hits in just 3 innings of work, walking 2 and striking out none. That’s a WHIP of 4.00 and an ERA of 15.00. On a team that’s not hitting, he has to be better than that.

Runners-down: Wily Mo Peña, Felipe Lopez, Luis Ayala

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Nationals Beast (and least) of the Week

Beast: Finally, their star shows up for them: Ryan Zimmerman.  Zimm hit .321 for the week, with 7 RBIs and 3 HRs. He’s done well in May after a horrid start and he’s one of the few things the Nats have to get excited about.

Runners Up: Cristian Guzman, Tim Redding, Aaron Boone

Least: Lastings Milledge. He hit .174 for the week.  That’s 4/23 overall and it’s not going to get the Nats anywhere (not that we were expecting it).  On the year he’s hitting .241, which is pretty much around his career numbers.  Why is he a starter?  Same question goes for Austin Kearns

Runners Down: Austin Kearns, Elijah Dukes

Postgame: Nats 4 – Phillies 0 [BEAST-OFF]

The Nats, led by right-hander Tim Redding, shutout the Phillies 4-0 last night. Redding pitched 6 and a third innings, he allowed 7 hits, gave up 2 walks, and struck out 2. The Phillies certainly had their chances throughout, with men seemingly every inning. The Phillies left 9 men on base throughout the game, many times coming in the middle of the order or with only 1 out. But they couldn’t find their way around Redding.

Brett Myers did not have the same luck. While he was not lit up as he has been in some earlier starts, he only lasted 6 innings, allowing 3 earned runs, giving up 8 hits, striking out 2, and walking 3. One of those walks was a four pitch at bat to Redding.

Myers got off to a poor start in the first when Dmitri Young hit a sac-fly to Shane Victorino, scoring Cristian Guzman. I was at the game and it did not look like Victorino played the ball correctly. He ran in on the ball immediately, preventing him from using his momentum to make a great throw to the cutoff. Still, his throw was okay. It was Jimmy Rollins‘ throw that really was the problem. It was off enough that it made the play close. Guzman was safe despite Carlos Ruiz‘s best effort.

The Nats tacked on three more runs in the game with a two RBI Lastings Milledge double in the 3rd, and a Dimitri Young double play in the 7th. Weird, yea, but Guzman scored despite getting the two outs.

The Phillies have now lost 7 of 11, and 3 in a row, a season-high losing streak. The Nats won their second in a row.

Nationals Beast (and least) of the Week

Tough choice here, but 1B Nick Johnson barely beats Ryan Zimmerman for the Beast of the Week honors. Nick hit .333 for the week, with a home run and 4 RBIs. He walked 8 times, striking out only 3, for a phenomenal OBP of .565. Nick’s bat will be crucial in the Nats lineup, as the failure to drive home Felipe Lopez and Cristian Guzman has been a significant problem thus far.

Runners-Up: Ryan Zimmerman, John Lannan

The least of the week for the Nationals is LHP Mike O’Connor. Having been moved into the rotation to take the place of ineffective starter Matt Chico, O’Connor needed to establish consistency at the back end of the starting five. He failed, going just 3.1, giving up 9 runs, all earned, on 6 hits, walking 6 and striking out just one. His WHIP increases to 2.44 on the season. His ERA climbs to 13.00. Ouch.

Runners-Up: Lastings Milledge, Felipe Lopez, Luis Ayala

Around the Beast

Marlins 7-Nationals 3 [BEAST-OFF]

Tim Redding never had it for the Nationals, going only 5.1 and giving up 6 runs, 5 earned, walking 4 and striking out 3. He got the loss on the night, and now stands at 4-3 on the year. Luis Gonzalez drove in three runs on the night and Jorge Cantu drove in two. Hanley Ramirez notched his 21st RBI of the year. For the Marlins, Ricky Nolasco was very good, getting the win and surrendering just one run on 4 hits in 6 innings of work, striking out 6 and walking 2. The reliable Doug Waechter was not so good in relief, surrendering two earned runs in two-thirds of an inning of work. But the rest of the fish pen held up. For the Nationals, Wily Mo Peña, Cristian Guzman, and Nick Johnson drove in runs. Ryan Zimmerman went 0-4 with a walk. Elijah Dukes returned to the Nationals, going 0-2 on the night.

Pirates 3-Braves 2

Tom Glavine is still winless after 6 starts, pitching well (7 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 4 BB, 2 SO), but getting no run support. Glavine got the no-decision after Freddy Sanchez hit a walk-off single in the ninth off of Jeff Bennett to snap the Braves’ perfect May. Ian Snell pitched well for the Bucs, going 7 full, giving up 1 run on 2 hits, walking 6 and striking out 5. John Grabow picked up his second year of the year for the Pirates. Jeff Francoeur represented the entirety of the Braves’ offense, driving in both runs, one off of Snell and one off of Tyler Yates, who blew the save for Pittsburgh.

Should the Nats hit the FA Market?

Thomas Boswell thinks so. In today’s Washington Post, Boswell argues that the Nats have to keep up with the rest of the division by signing free agents this offseason, mentioning Orlando Hudson, Rafael Furcal, C.C. Sabathia, and Ben Sheets as possible targets.

Well first of all, scratch Sabathia right off that list, because there’s no way the Nats are getting anywhere close to C.C.

The article brings up a good point (even if Boswell is a bit delusional). The Nationals are at somewhat of a crossroads here. There is talent on this current team, but Jim Bowden’s “dream” lineup of players like Austin Kearns and Felipe Lopez is more of a nightmare at this point. Sure, the Nationals are winning games right now, but if you told NL Beast that it was the starting pitching, not the core offense of Ryan Zimmerman, Nick Johnson, and Lastings Milledge that was most responsible, we’d be shocked.

It’s clear at this point that Stan Kasten‘s philosophy is to wait for the farm system to develop and then compete. There some great players coming up in the future, including Ross Detweiler, Chris Marrero, and Colin Balester, but there is no way this team is going to compete in the near future without signing free agents.

NL Beast is sick of the excuse that the Nationals don’t have the money to compete in the free agent market (Forbes ranked the Nationals as the 13th most profitable team in baseball).

With Felipe Lopez, Cristian Guzman, Wily Mo Peña, and Odalis Perez all becoming free agents after this year, it’s very possible that the starting nine will look very different next year. Or, if history has told us anything, maybe not.

Nationals Beast (and least) of the Week

This week’s beast is SS Cristian Guzman. Just a triple from hitting for the cycle Saturday, Guzman has quietly prospered in the two-spot behind Felipe Lopez. Guzman leads the team with a .309 BA and drove in a team-high 6 RBIs this week (note: all 6 runs were driven in on Saturday, which says something about this team).

Runners-Up: Wil Nieves, Odalis Perez

The least of the week honor goes to Ryan Zimmerman. It’s tough to criticize the Nats’ burgeoning superstar, but something has to give with Ryan’s struggling bat. His stats for this week: .160, .192, .320 with 4 RBIs in 25 plate appearances. In other words, pretty poor. Zim asked for the day off today…could it be that the Z-Man has some sort of nagging injury? Given his slow-ish recovery this offseason, NL Beast wouldn’t be surprised.

Runners-Up: Lastings Milledge, Matt Chico