Friday, April 22, 2005


Wow, Ryan Church smells like a Carolina pine forest!

Well, that was quick---and not unexpected. Give Church this much credit at least: he's no lapsed Robinsonian:

"I have no problems with it," said Church, who is hitting .161. "It only makes sense. I'm struggling a little bit, so we have a guy [Sledge] that deserves every right to be out there. I'm pulling for him."
Shall we contrast Soul Patch's response upon being benched with Cristian Guzman's poopy-pants upon being (sort of, kind of) demoted to the eight-hole. Here's what Guzman said to the press about it:

[ . . . ]
Oh, that's right; he's not talking to the media. How mature.

Anyway, in one of those tables-turned-quickly scenarios, just a couple or three weeks ago it was Church nudging back into the lineup at the expense of Sledge. But most of us saw that move as temporary, anyway.
I commented on Church v. Sledge I, The Melee at RFK, at the time. In that (characteristically lengthy) post, I got around to posing a question:

I'll state my position: Church should be given a clear and adequate shot. And then I'll leave a question open: In the event Church doesn't get a clear and adequate shot, is this something to inspire pitch forks and soccer riots?
Was this "a clear and adequate shot"? By any measure other than "I just know that Church really stinks," almost certainly not. The guy has had 36 plate appearances so far. (Admittedly, they are 36 astoundily bad ones---even Linda Cropp could almost post a .465 OPS.) As noted by our telegenic friends at Nationals Review, that sample size doesn't even come close to overcoming
Voros's Law:

Any major league hitter can hit just about anything in 60 at bats.

So, what's the score? Are we going to go off and burn stuff now? Well, let's not go crazy. After all, if Church is cool with it, so should we be.

One note on Sledge: I've noticed he's got a lot of really big boosters on the Ballpark Guys board. These aren't people who are limited to saying Sledge should play; no, a lot of people there think Sledge is really something, perhaps a potential star. I've never understood why. He's not a high-average hitter; he's not a power hitter; he's not a base stealer; he's not a Proven Veteran(tm); he's not an especially young guy. He just sort of exists. I'll just correlate the love with another observation I've made: many people also think he's a centerfielder---though our team's management apparently doesn't.

Now, I'm not down on Sledge, necessarily. I'm just fascinated why he commands such respect on that board.

---New DC blogs abound!!! Welcome:

Nasty Nats!
The Beltway Boys!

Both blogsters---Rocket and Farid, respectively---are veteran commenters of other Nats blogs, including mine. Farid also has a column at Nat Fanatics.

Welcome to the neighborhood, guys. Watch out for Needham, though. You remember The Burbs?

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