Author Topic: Sunshine Squad 2022 - It Can Only Get Better (& it has)  (Read 1420 times)

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Offline Five Banners

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Re: Sunshine Squad 2022 - It Can Only Get Better
« Reply #101: August 07, 2022, 11:07:46 AM »
https://www.talknats.com/2022/08/06/nats-better-place-re-sign-soto-2025/

It can be bookmarked for when the guy who was definitely going to free agency doesn’t go to free agency.

Offline DPMOmaha

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Re: Sunshine Squad 2022 - It Can Only Get Better
« Reply #102: August 07, 2022, 11:15:18 AM »
That is the pipe dream…

Offline Slateman

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Re: Sunshine Squad 2022 - It Can Only Get Better
« Reply #103: August 07, 2022, 01:01:39 PM »
It can get worse. Padres lose in the Wild Card round and Preller gets fired. New GM flips Soto at the Winter Meetings to the World Champion Mets for a prospect package better than we got and Cohen trolls the Nats on Twitter. Mets repeat. Scherzer and Soto go into the Hall with Mets hats.
Glad you're here. I was almost getting optimistic

Offline English Natsie

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Re: Sunshine Squad 2022 - It Can Only Get Better
« Reply #104: August 07, 2022, 02:23:58 PM »
Why we are where we are - a little light reading for bedtime... ;)

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01331/full

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Ultimate Sunshine - Much better ball
« Reply #105: September 18, 2022, 11:30:09 AM »
Since CJ Abrams's call up after the 8/14 game, the Nats are 13-16 as of this morning.  The Nats are also 7-8 in September, even with a 5 game losing streak.

There's a decent possibility that this group of guys dropped from 40 man rosters (Alex Call), past-prime non-prospects (Joey Meneses), journeymen (Ildemaro Vargas), arguably rushed prospects (CJ Abrams), trade substitute throw ins (Luke Voit), miscellaneous backups and fringe roster types can pull together a month and a half of near .500 ball.

It's been fun, too.  The Nats still blow ballgames, but they have been able to take advantage of blown leads, too.  Defense has had a huge upgrade (I won't tell it to Gunnar Henderson, though), especially in the infield, while Meneses, of course, and Voit / Vargas / Garcia / Thomas have all looked good at the plate.

Bullpen has been mostly effective, and while the defense can't help on homers, the starters are keeping the team in games. 

Call and Vargas and Abbott show there's an advantage to being able to pick early in waivers. Granted, these guys are cast offs, but they (along with Thomas) have a chance to play / pitch regularly, which occasionally leads to swimming and not sinking.  Their ceilings might only be MLB average, but that's better than what we've trotted out.

It's going to be a fun last 3 weeks. It's nice to turn on a game and feel it is something other than a wake.


[Edit - originally posted this as a separate topic, but it really is a "Sunshine" post.  The only difference I have with the topic is that I think at this point we can say it has gotten much better in concrete ways and not just wishful thinking at this point]


Offline Smithian

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I have longer thoughts for later. But this is a good edit to the thread title.

There’s a lot of concerning developments, almost all related to pitcher health up and down the organization. The overall picture is so much better than it was a few weeks ago. If they finish around .500 post-deadline, that may spur new ownership to add a bit this offseason.

There’s a starting 9 right now I actually like. Just need to stabilize starting pitching.

Offline Slateman

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Defense looks good. Lane Thomas has hit well enough to earn a starting job, or at least compete for one.

Joey Menses is a huge revelation. Maybe the silver lining to all this is that unlike Yadi, he got time to show he could hit.

We now have a TON of depth at catcher.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Defense looks good. Lane Thomas has hit well enough to earn a starting job, or at least compete for one.

Joey Menses is a huge revelation. Maybe the silver lining to all this is that unlike Yadi, he got time to show he could hit.

We now have a TON of depth at catcher.
It'll be interesting to see if Millas gets time in the AFL and can show anything on offense.  Arguably, he's taken a real step back in terms of how likely he is to be an MLB contributor. 

Offline welch

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Thomas has 17 homers now. Seems like a steady .250 hitter. Good fielder in LF or RF, has a good arm, and throws to the right base. He won't make the All-Star Game, but he should start next season.

I'm even hoping that Robles hits .230, which would make him a starter. Seems he has learned to bunt. He he could learn to take a walk...Maybe he noticed that Hassell has done well in A+ and AA.

Abrams is just fine. Vargas can field 3B and has hit. Kieboom, I predict, will play a lot in Rochester, with Alu and Vargas at 3B.

Offline imref

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So without any roster moves, here's the likely 2023 26-man roster:

C. Ruiz
1B. Voit
2B. Garcia
3B. Vargas
SS. Abrams
DH. Cruz
LF. Thomas
CF. Robles
RF. Meneses

Bench: Call, Palacios, Kieboom, Alu

SP: Gore, Cavalli, Gray, Fedde, Corbin
BP: Finnegan, Harvey, Doolittle, Espino, Machado, Weems, Abbott, Thompson

Seems adding a corner OF is a no-brainer on the idea that they buyout Cruz and move Meneses to 1B.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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So without any roster moves, here's the likely 2023 26-man roster:

C. Ruiz
1B. Voit
2B. Garcia
3B. Vargas
SS. Abrams
DH. Cruz
LF. Thomas
CF. Robles
RF. Meneses

Bench: Call, Palacios, Kieboom, Hernandez

SP: Gore, Cavalli, Gray, Fedde, Corbin
BP: Finnegan, Harvey, Doolittle, Espino, Machado, Weems, Abbott, Thompson

Seems adding a corner OF is a no-brainer on the idea that they buyout Cruz and move Meneses to 1B.
Cruz will be bought out for $3 million.  The best buy out ever.  If you want to pencil in somebody, then it'd be Call in the OF, Meneses at 1st, and Voit at DH.    Is Doo under contract?  I don't think Cesar is.

Offline imref

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i might have missed a few FA's, hernandez is a FA at the end of the year so i replaced him with Alu

Offline Slateman

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Thomas has 17 homers now. Seems like a steady .250 hitter. Good fielder in LF or RF, has a good arm, and throws to the right base. He won't make the All-Star Game, but he should start next season.

I think Thomas could be an everyday RFer. He has done better with regular starting time. Pre-deadline, outside of June (22 starts in 24 games), he was only getting starts in spurts and then sitting the bench in spurts. Sub 80 wRC+ in that time.

August 1st, Soto is gone and Thomas is an every day starter. Since then, he's posted a 123 wRC+. This coming off last year where he posted a 127 wRC+ as an everyday player.

He posts that over a season with the good defense in RF he's playing, and he's a 3.5 WAR player. If he can learn to play CF even league average levels, he's capable of 4+

Offline PowerBoater69

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Cruz will be bought out for $3 million.  The best buy out ever.  If you want to pencil in somebody, then it'd be Call in the OF, Meneses at 1st, and Voit at DH.    Is Doo under contract?  I don't think Cesar is.

I see about $50 million coming off the books in 2023. $57 from the guys below, offset by about $7 in raises for Voit, Fedde, and Robles, leaving the Nats around $70 million under the MLB average. If good fortune comes this winter the new owners will take over with a desire to reverse the trend of declining season plan sales. So I'm hoping for $50-70 million in free agent signings. Two starters and two position players would be nice, with no deals longer than 2-3 years. Add that to our returning group and 81+ wins is possible.

Soto, Juan   $17,100,000
Cruz, Nelson   $9,000,000
Bell, Josh   $10,000,000
Harris, Will   $8,000,000
Hernández, César   $4,000,000
Ross, Joe   $2,400,000
Sanchez, Anibal   $2,000,000
Cishek, Steve   $1,750,000
Adrianza, Ehire   $1,500,000
Doolittle, Sean   $1,500,000

One last bit of offseason sunshine, the Angelos family is a mess, which will complicate the sale of the Os. Their fans are going to be disappointed when the Angelos family makes minimal additions with the sale pending.

Offline Smithian

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C. Ruiz
1B. Meneses
2B. Garcia
3B. Vargas
SS. Abrams
DH. Voit
OF Call
OF Thomas
OF FA / Trade - Cruz money

Sign me up for that starting lineup. Not a playoff lineup, but at least a lineup without a single player I'll be mad to watch take the field on Opening Day.

Won't even guess what the pitching staff will look like.

Offline Mattionals

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C. Ruiz
1B. Meneses
2B. Garcia
3B. Vargas
SS. Abrams
DH. Voit
OF Call
OF Thomas
OF FA / Trade - Cruz money

Sign me up for that starting lineup. Not a playoff lineup, but at least a lineup without a single player I'll be mad to watch take the field on Opening Day.

Won't even guess what the pitching staff will look like.


I'd take 70 wins with that lineup.

Offline PowerBoater69

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I'd take 70 wins with that lineup.

Yeah, not a bad base as a starting point but I'd be pretty disappointed to see that line up in April, the OF/DH really need to be upgraded.

Offline Smithian

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Yeah, not a bad base as a starting point but I'd be pretty disappointed to see that line up in April, the OF/DH really need to be upgraded.
I don't mind Call and Thomas starting. Thomas should start as he is solid with consistent playing time. And I'd like to see Call get 400 ABs and see if he's anything. The third spot should be a FA or trade pickup. If anything, that OF will be better defensively that it's been, which is valuable after having the worst baserunning and defensive team in the majors.

I am fine with Voit as DH knowing that they'll mix in Meneses there and probably use it to rotate players, which they can't do with Cruz. Maybe they even give Yadiel Hernandez burn there.

They have to add an OF. But a 1B/DH feels like a luxury unless new ownership is announced soon and hits the ground running, which I doubt.

Offline GburgNatsFan

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Did I miss something? Is Robles gone? Or are we just thinking we've moved on?

Offline Smithian

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Did I miss something? Is Robles gone? Or are we just thinking we've moved on?
This is the Sunshine Squad thread. I'm assuming he's gone. More sober analysis is found on the premature roster speculation thread, where I would probably allow the idea he'll start in CF and give us another year of painful viewing.

Offline imref

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Did I miss something? Is Robles gone? Or are we just thinking we've moved on?

i'd love to see them sign a OF who is at least a league average hitter and move Robles into the 4th OF role, but i assume Robles is our opening day starter.

Offline Slateman

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Did I miss something? Is Robles gone? Or are we just thinking we've moved on?
He homered yesterday.

There are a lot of folks on this board that think we should move on from Robles, largely because they dont understand that at 2 million, he's still a bargain. Particularly with the DH

Offline DPMOmaha

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The really good defensive version of Robles has been hanging around for a while now. That'll be enough to keep him around. He's still under control for a while, so, unless he's traded, I'd be surprised if he's not here. I don't think they'll simply cut him.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Did I miss something? Is Robles gone? Or are we just thinking we've moved on?
he hits his second year of arbitration, so that's one question. There also seems to be more vocal frustration with him if you read Dougherty and others reports that are from team sources. Brainlock on throws and at the plate.  there's also an alternative. Thomas has not been able to play well defensively in CF despite his arm and speed until this year, when he's been passable / middling.  Thomas's bat plays well enough to be a decent CF if he isn't a butcher defensively, so some folks are ready to make him the everyday regular.  Robles is still a guy whose D will carry him as long as he is merely below average offensively and not bad, but his baseball acumen pulls down on his value.  Shiners might hope for an upgrade.  He's actually hit well against lefties, so I could see that upgrade being a lefty platoon bat in a corner OF position so Robles can shift to a platoon starter and defensive replacement, with Thomas full time.