I know we have a couple of Marlins and Phils fans, with a Braves fan or two, so this thread can survive. lol
W/ that said, I will have team previews and predictions.
Much has been made of this exciting team, they are the popular club to be heralded as the breakout team of 2012.Acquisitions of Edwin Jackson and Gio Gonzalez, have this rotation looking deadlier than ever. However, this rotation's success begins and ends with Stephen Strausburg. Strausburg will be watched closely, as he will have a innings cap for 2012. Edwin Jackson and Gio both can be lights out or erratic at times with command issues, while Zimmerman is almost 26 and has room to go. Lannan was seen as a hot trade commodity in the spring, but may stick w/ the club, as Wang will be on the back end of this rotation.
The lineup of the Nationals, has mixed blend of youth and veterans. Franchise staple Ryan Zimmerman will likely have a bounce back year, as he is now healthy, and will provide much needed power and fielding. Jason Werth is still an enigma and on the wrong side of 30, so it's not easy to say he plays close to days in Philly. It will be interesting to see if Ramos; Morse, Espinonosa, and Desmond can improve on their 2011 campaigns, or regress due to the added pressure. Even with all these factors, it will still seen secondary, to when Bryce Harper joins the club sometime in the summer. It will be ridiculous, to suggest Bryce's arrival will be anything short of grand. With his five-tool prowess; his phenomenal aura and him possibly playing center-field, the baseball world will watch Bryce and the Nationals closely this year.
In conclusion, the Nationals are a very talented team, with a high ceiling. Similar to the Marlins, they will be dependent on their ace's health, and we'll see if that pans out. I like this team going forward, unfortunately I see them just short of being a post-season team, I predict the Nationals to be a 86 win team in 2012.
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