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Places RHP John Lackey won’t end up: Washington Nationals

with one comment

Zip. Zero. Zilch. Nada. None.

That’s the likelihood that John Lackey, 2010’s blue chip free agent, ends up with the Washington National’s ball club.

But that’s not what some would have us believe. Today’s Nationals beat writer Bill Ladson announced that the Nationals will be bidding for the services of the 31-year-old righthander.

Well, duh. I have $3,000 in my savings account and I’m in the damn bidding.

The Washington Nationals can certainly afford to sign John Lackey, don’t get me wrong. Earlier this offseason, Austin Kearns’ shouldn’t-have-done-that salary came off the books and catcher Josh Bard and hurler Livan Hernandez followed him into the free agent pool shortly thereafter. Dmitri “Da Meathook” Young also departed and reliever Ron “Suitcase” Villone packed his bags once again, too.

All in all, it’s expected that the team will free up nearly one-quarter of its $62 million payroll from 2009. For around $15 million per season, it is hypothetically possible they could lock Lackey down to a five or six year deal, which is inline with what he’s supposedly demanding.

Still, General Manager Mike Rizzo will have to outbid the deep pockets of the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, and New York Mets, all of which own payrolls at least twice as large as the Nationals.

But there’s other factors too. The main one being: the Washington Nationals are a terrible team.

Lackey has played for a World Championship contender for the past eight seasons. He has pitched in five different playoffs; 60 percent of the time he’s been a member of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, he’s reached the postseason. Hell, the guy has even won Game 7 of the World Series.

Now, it would be really cute to imagine a world where John Lackey signs with the Washington Nationals and they immediately reach the postseason. But unfortunately, we live in the real world and that isn’t likely to happen anytime soon.

Mr. Rizzo stated that Lackey might want to become a Washington Natinal (intentional) because :

We think with the additions of an Adam Dunn, a Josh Willingham and Nyjer Morgan, it’s going to attract some veteran players. These guys know what we are doing here. It’s all over the league where we are at and what we are trying to do. I think they can see this is the beginning of a good, exciting ballclub.

Yeah, a good, exciting ballclub that has lost 100 games in consecutive seasons. Yeah, a good, exciting ballclub that cites Josh Willingham and Nyjer Morgan as reasons to come join a perennial loser. I’m sorry, Mr. Rizzo, but you lost me at “Adam Dunn.”

The only way John Lackey suits up as a National in 2010 is if he decides to perform charity and “mentor” the likes of Jordan Zimmermann, Ross Detwiler, and Stephen Strasburg. It’s certainly going to take something or someone drastic to improve a team pitching staff that ranked 16th in wins, ERA, shutouts, hits allowed, earned runs allowed, and base-on-balls.

But once again, it’s really just sweet dreams to imagine a sport where ace pitchers doom themselves to perpetual loser-dom.

If John Lackey touches Washington with a 10-foot pole, I’d be surprised.

Zip. Zero. Zilch. Nada. None.

No chance.


One Response

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  1. Loved the article. Keep up the good work.

    Kathleen Burke

    November 21, 2009 at 1:24 pm

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