Sunday, July 30, 2006

Sunday Smorgasbord 7-30

  • Nats get swept. Now at 46-59 with 57 games left, the Nationals are 17.5 games out of first place in the NL East. Their elimination number (Mets) is 41. They are 9 games out of the Wild Card and their elimination number from the Wild Card (Reds) is 49. Only the Royals, Pirates, Devil Rays, and Cubs have a worse record than the Nationals.
  • The big question of course is, will Alfonso Soriano still be a Nat at this time tomorrow? Personally, I don't think so. But I have to admit, I really don't care all that much. He was a hired gun from the beginning and it was foolish to think that he was staying here beyond this season. It has been a lot of fun watching him play, but winning is what matters and we aren't doing a whole lot of that with him. He isn't likely to be here next year if we don't trade him, so let's get the maximum value that we can.
  • I forgot to mention last week that with the various Hip-Hop and Latino songs that are played when Nationals players come to bat at RFK, Austin Kearns' selection of "Play Me Some Mountain Music" sticks out like a sore thumb. Maybe that's why he's miserable.
  • Redskins training camp opened today. The only news was that Rocky McIntosh signed his contract today and that the Redskins have all six of their draft picks on board. Last year when training camp opened, there was no coverage on the front page of the (Com)Post Times Sports Sections. The Nats were in the heat of a pennant race and it signified a brand new day in Washington, D.C. However today the Nats are playing out the string but only the (Com)Post put the Redskins on the front page of the Sports section. Take it for what its worth.
  • I know all good things must come to an end but when that end comes as cheaply as it did last night, I find very little consolation. The first penalty kick call was legit, but the second one wasn't even worthy of a World Cup performance. Referee Abbey Okulaja has to feel like Chris Klein pulled one over on him after looking at the tape. He didn't call the foul right away and had to think about it. He should have followed his initial instinct. Yes, D.C. United had their chances to put the game away, but cheap calls are cheap calls no matter when they come. They sting especially bad when they cost you a game. That being said despite the loss; D.C. United's magic number shrunk last night. Now at 13-2-6 with 11 games left in the regular season, their magic number for a playoff spot is down to 12. Their magic number for the Eastern Conference title is now 17 and for first place over all is still 30.
  • Not that I condone gambling around here but my father who is spending his retirement (among other things) in Las Vegas reports that the odds on the Caps winning the Stanley Cup are 80-1. The Maryland Terrapins winning the college football national championship are 115-1. The Redskins making Super Bowl XLI is 5-1 but actually winning Super Bowl XLI is 12-1. The over/under on Redskins victories in the regular season is 9.
  • And finally this week, the Nats this time pay a visit to Big Head Barry for three in San Francisco before finishing off their Left Coast trip in San Diego next weekend. D.C. United has a U.S. Open Cup Round of 16 match vs. Columbus at the Maryland Soccerplex in Germantown, MD on August 1st and then is off for the MLS All-Star break. The Caps are scheduled to go to arbitration with Matt "Princess" Pettinger on Wednesday. Seeing as how they have avoided arbitration with everybody else, it will be interesting to see what happens if they actually have a hearing. Oh and the Soriano saga will come to a mericiful end sometime tomorrow.

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