As bad as things are for the Washington Nationals — and they are so bad that even I think people are piling on now — consider how much worse it could have been Tuesday night at Nationals Park for the 2009 baseball amateur draft.
There were more workers in the wet stands than fans when it was announced by baseball commissioner Cadillac Bud Selig that the Nationals had selected Stephen Strasburg as the number one pick in the draft. It was, as one club official said, “a great day in Nationals franchise history,” yet because of the rain once again, there was no one on hand to share it, as the start of the scheduled game against the Cincinnati Reds was delayed by the downpour.
But consider this — the person who declared it “a great day in Nationals franchise history” was acting general manager Mike Rizzo.
It could have been Jim Bowden.
Yes, things could have been worse — the Nationals could have been thrown into the national spotlight for the next two months of negotiations with Strasburg’s agent, Scott Boras, with Bowden as one of the featured players.
How would you feel about that?
Rizzo, at least, presents a level of professionalism that you never had with Bowden. He has also dealt with Boras in the past, in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization, and reportedly have a good relationship.
The Nationals currently have two Boras clients on the major league roster — Ron Villone and Julian Tavarez. Both were signed by Rizzo after Bowden left.
I will be on The Sports Reporters on ESPN 980 AM Washington on Wednesday, June 10, from 5 to 7 p.m.
To learn more about Thom Loverro, go to www.thomloverro.com