- The Washington Times - Monday, April 13, 2009

WEEKEND REWIND: IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Nationals open season 0-6 — The Lerners may have wised up and gotten rid of Jim Bowden, but his personnel mistakes are still casting a long shadow on the franchise. In series sweeps by the Marlins and Braves, the Nationals' roster flaws were magnified: no starting pitching depth, poor defense (hello, Lastings Milledge) and too many corner outfielder types. As if that weren't bad enough, Emilio Bonifacio — the second baseman traded for Josh Willingham and Scott Olsen — has been the National League's hottest hitter this week. Then again, when a trade pits Bowden against the two-time World Series-winning Marlins front office, what did you expect?

Capitals clinch East's second seed — In the first round, the Caps have a much better matchup than facing the Flyers like they did last year. The Rangers scuffled most of the season before firing their coach (sound familiar?), and they lost three of four games against the Caps this season. Unlike in 2008, the Caps don't have the inexperience card to play, meaning anything less than a deep playoff run will be viewed as a disappointment.

TWT FIVE: NATIONAL EVENTS THE D.C. AREA SHOULD HOST

Fresh off the success of the Frozen Four, here are a few more ideas:

1. MLB All-Star Game — Let's be honest: The All-Star Game would be the only time Nationals Park is going to host a nationally relevant baseball game for a long time.

2. U.S. Figure Skating Championships — Much like politics, it isn't really a sport, but the participants sure think it is.

3. NFL Draft — With the economy suffering, Dan Snyder would save money not having to helicopter in top-10 draft picks to FedEx Field or Redskin Park.

4. World Cup match — RFK Stadium has a history of hosting matches, but will it exist the next time the United States hosts the event?

5. NHL All-Star Game — If for no other reason than there's a pretty good chance Elisha Cuthbert would show up.

HE SAID WHAT?

“Yeah, it's our job to sign for the fans and to treat them nice, but when they have three suitcases, that's a little ridiculous.” — NASCAR driver Kyle Busch

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