'Your papers, please' must never be heard in America
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
Josh Hamilton is heading to the Los Angeles Angels, lured with a $125 million, five-year contract that steps up the migration of high-profile stars to Southern California.
The Los Angeles Angels added starter Joe Blanton and reliever Sean Burnett to their retooled pitching staff. Jeff Keppinger found a new home, as did Eric Chavez.
Jeff Keppinger, Joe Blanton, Jason Bay and a diamond full of players wound up in different places Wednesday at the winter meetings while top contenders waited for a pair of free-agent prizes to make their decisions.
The Washington Nationals parted ways with left-hander Sean Burnett on Wednesday afternoon when Burnett agreed to a two-year deal with a club option with the Los Angeles Angels.
It was three weeks ago, a month removed from one of the most gut-wrenching nights of his career as a general manager, that Mike Rizzo reflected on the Washington Nationals' playoff exit.
The Nationals tell us they've started a new tradition here, one of winning. It is difficult to argue with the results. They've won enough to make the playoffs. They hope it isn't another 79 years before it happens again.
There is nothing about what John Lannan has done this season that seems normal to him. He looks around at the starting pitchers the Washington Nationals have used for the majority of this season, the power arms that pound hitters day after day, and knows he does not fit the mold.
The gap between the Washington Nationals and the Chicago Cubs was made perfectly clear this week at Nationals Park.
Washington Nationals manager Davey Johnson was heading out of his post-game press conference Tuesday night when he decided to turn the tables on a small group of reporters. It was his turn to ask a question.
Stephen Strasburg returned to dominant, strike-throwing form against St. Louis after struggling in his last start. According to his manager, the All-Star ace will have two more opportunities at being "vintage Strasburg" this season.
The context of the Washington Nationals' season has made it so that there are very few situations in which their confidence wavers.
Six innings had passed the Washington Nationals by Saturday night when Ryan Zimmerman looked up at the scoreboard to see Roy Halladay's pitch count. What he saw was confirmation of what he and the rest of the Nationals had felt in the batter's box all night. Halladay was throwing nothing but strikes.
On better baseball teams, the collection of odds and ends that makes up a team's bullpen tends to be much greater than the sum of its parts. And we're seeing that now with the Washington Nationals, who all of a sudden are one of the big leagues' "better teams."
The workload, innings and stress on the Washington Nationals' starting staff has been carefully examined this season. But what has been less discussed is the reliance they have had on their bullpen arms.
The sour realities that come with being the best team in the major leagues aren't all that plentiful. The Washington Nationals entered Tuesday night's game against the San Francisco Giants having lost just twice in their previous 13 games and the night before they'd set a record for hits inside the pitcher's haven that is AT&T Park.
"That's a heck of an offensive club and this was just one of those games," said reliever Sean Burnett. "Since it's a playoff game, you don't want to say just throw it away. We have to pitch a little better."
Burnett said the session went well, and the Nationals hope to have him available by Wednesday for the series finale, if not Tuesday.