Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Flip this Byrd

Always on the ball, Rocket Bill parcels out the straight dope on Byrd-Brinkman I: Tumble in the Grass:

Nationals outfielder Marlon Byrd is still awaiting word of his punishment after knocking down second base umpire Joe Brinkman last Saturday against the Marlins. But according to a team source, Byrd likely will be suspended one game and fined $1,000.

Ladson also goes all Deep Throat (or at least Barbara Walters) on us, scoring an "exclusive interview" with Byrd:

Byrd said he spoke to Brinkman recently and told him that he didn't mean to knock him down. Byrd also is grateful that Brinkman was in great spirits and took the accident in stride.
"With [Brinkman] going down, that was something nobody wanted. There was no intent to have him go on the ground or go near him," Byrd said. "I was yelling at [Bill Miller]. I saw Brinkman the last second and tried to move out the way, but then I hit his arm. I was running by him and he stuck his arm out. "Brinkman told me that he could tell I wasn't looking at
him. I saw him the last second. That's why I dodged him. He knows I wasn't trying to hit him."

Something tells me that Brinkman's good spirits were conveyed to the Politburo and were used as mitigating evidence when Byrd's punishment was considered.


Maybe the newest Nat, Dutch Zimmerman,
can spot Marlon some Gammonseseses.

Speaking of money, Ryan Zimmerman signed today for . . . a whole lot of it. Rocket Bill confirms (article cited above) that the bargained-for exchange occurred thusly:

---> Zimmerman signs with the club.
---> The club gives Zimmerman $2.975 million.

That's not exactly "Upton money" (rumored to be about $5 million), but I suppose "Dutch" isn't complaining, either. Plus, he got to meet ¡LIVAN! . What more could a young man want?


Carlos Baerga (2005 edition) is to second basemen as Horatio Saenz (any edition) is to comedians.

Yet, there he was tonight, subbing for Jamey Carroll, who---Rocket Bill notes in still the same article---was scratched from tonight's game owing to a sore left ankle:

Carroll hurt the ankle on Tuesday after grounding out to shortstop in the fifth inning. The ankle turned while he stepped in the base. The team noticed that Carroll was still running
gingerly during batting practice on Wednesday. Carroll said he hopes to return to action the next day against the A's.

And speaking of tonight's game, the Nats won again. Bang-zoom! It helps to play the 2005 A's, certainly, and it sure was nice of the Oaklanders to dish out a starting pitcher with this career line coming into the season:

W . . . L . . . ERA . . . IP . . . H . . . HR . . . BB . . . SO . . . ERA+
9 . . . . 16 . . 6.19 . . . 209 . . 256 . . 36 . . . . 110 . . 101 . . 80

Ryan Glynn hung around decently for three innings, and I began to envision a reprise of the "Obermuller game." That was not to be, though---decidely so. In the fourth, Baerga doubled home Nick Johnson, and Brian Schneider followed up with a two-run homer. Ryan Church had a big game, and Vinny Castilla homered, making Ladson look good for a night. Esteban Loiza is now on pace for more than three wins, which has to make him feel good.


One more note: Ryan Drese was designated for assignment today. Should the Nats be interested?

I say no to Drese, but yes to Josh Phelps.
Also, I say yes to Matt Perisho, as he *has* to be better than C.J. Nitkowski, but we'd be designating him ourselves once Eischen is back. So he has to be basically free.
Drese is realy no better than the cavalcade of #4/5 SPs the Nationals currently employ
I completely forgot about Phelps!

Drese pitched well (120 ERA+) but dangerously (< 4.5K/9IP) last year. I agree he's not any better than the 4/5's we currently have.
No to Perisho; he's a CJ clone. Yes to Phelps -- way better than Wife Beater Cordero. No way to Drese who just got really lucky last season and hasn't distinguished himself in the majors or minors.
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