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Nationals WILL compete next year.

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Yes I'm aware they're in the NL East. This team is on the upswing and will shock some people next season.

They're going to add a SP this offseason and many are saying CJ Wilson. That means the starting rotation would look something like this

Strasburg
Wilson
Zimmermann
Wang
Lannan

The bullpen needs some work but they have a pretty elite 8th/9th inning combo in Clippard & Storen.

The offense could use some work but it's got a very solid foundation. Zimmerman and Morse are already stars. Danny Espinosa & Wilson Ramos have shown loads of potential throughout the season with the bat, but haven't been consistent. If Werth can revert back to his Philly ways next year, the offense could be something special. This isn't even factoring the possibility of Harper playing next year.

You also have to take into account the Nats have a farm system many say is among the best in the league(top 5 at worse).

Man, haven't been this excited about baseball in a while.

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Ive been thinking that at the beginning of the season for a couple years now, and somehow they manage to continue to be mediocre

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they need to readjust the park dimensions. not a hitters park at all.

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[quote name='tight lines']Ive been thinking that at the beginning of the season for a couple years now, and somehow they manage to continue to be mediocre[/QUOTE]

If you thought they would be anything better than a .500 team this year, you were foolish. I went in expecting that, and it's proven about right. I agree, that the Nats should be able to compete next year. But in the same division as Atlanta and the Phillies, I think the best we can hope for in the near future is giving the Braves an honest run for the Wildcard spot. We are doomed to be third fiddle for a while.

But next year, with a stonger rotation, a deadly 8th-9th combo, an honest to goodness first baseman, and emerging home run threats in Morse and Espinosa, the only thing keeping us from really succeeding is a true lead-off man who can get us an early jump on the scoreboard when Zim hits a liner into shallow right. Having two outs when he gets to the plate is costing us dozens of runs every year.

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[quote name='tight lines']Ive been thinking that at the beginning of the season for a couple years now, and somehow they manage to continue to be mediocre[/QUOTE]

The Nationals have never had the starting pitching they will have in 2012. This is without us signing a big name starter. I don't know why you would predict us to be above .500 any year before this one but our team has never been as talented as it will be next year.

Hell, we're probably going to end the season just a few games under .500 and we were without Zimmerman, one of the best players at his position in the league, for a big part of the season. We were without Strasburg until September, and he's still not at full strength. Zimmermann will be able to pitch an entire season. Our big time free agency signing put together an absolutely abysmal season(Werth)... Our manager quit in the middle of the fuging season right after getting us over .500 for the first time(that late into the season) in I don't know how long. There are so many things that went against us this year yet we still finished with a very respectable record given our division.

[quote name='Captroop']If you thought they would be anything better than a .500 team this year, you were foolish. I went in expecting that, and it's proven about right. I agree, that the Nats should be able to compete next year. But in the same division as Atlanta and the Phillies, I think the best we can hope for in the near future is giving the Braves an honest run for the Wildcard spot. We are doomed to be third fiddle for a while.

But next year, with a stonger rotation, a deadly 8th-9th combo, an honest to goodness first baseman, and emerging home run threats in Morse and Espinosa, the only thing keeping us from really succeeding is a true lead-off man who can get us an early jump on the scoreboard when Zim hits a liner into shallow right. Having two outs when he gets to the plate is costing us dozens of runs every year.[/QUOTE]

Yeah the lead off hitter thing has got to be solved. I know they've been interested in BJ Upton for quite a while but I don't think he would solve the problem. Really wish they would have made a move for Michael Bourn... the Braves got him for pennies.

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