Citizens of Natstown Podcast Episode 149

The Citizens are back to recap the first four games of the NLDS, talk the probability of certain scenarios in Game 5, lament a certain roster decision, take a brief look at the NLCS (No we're not getting ahead of ourselves, if we have a podcast next week we'll be over halfway through the CS), and more!

It's time for Extra Life again! We're raising money for sick kids at Children's National Medical Center in DC. Go here for information and go here to donate! Thank you for your support Natstown!

Extra Life 2016 is November 5th!

tl;dr: Help us help sick kids at Children’s National Medical Center in DC. Donate here.

It’s that time again: summer is quickly fading to fall, the Nats are gunning for home field advantage in the NLDS, and our yearly Extra Life marathon benefitting the Children's National Medical Center located in Washington, DC is just around the corner.

If you’re a new reader to the site this season, or just haven’t seen our previous Extra Life endeavors; Extra Life is a 24-hour video game marathon benefiting Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. We specifically chose all proceeds donated to our campaign to benefit Children’s National Medical Center, located in Washington, DC.

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Citizens of Natstown Podcast Episode 148

In a two-man show O'Hara and TJ discuss the litany of Nats injuries over the last month, the meaning of losing Wilson Ramos, the NLDS rotation/bullpen/bench options, Jose Fernandez, and a few other random topics.

Our Extra Life 2016 campaign has kicked off, please be sure to read about our efforts to raise money for Children's National and donate here!

Monday Breakdown: Is the Nats' Schedule Too Easy?

With 51 games left to play (and 32 NL East rivalry games remaining), the Washington Nationals stand seven games ahead of the second-place Miami Marlins. 

Even though the Nats have some breathing room in the East - and the Nats currently hold winning records against all their division opponents - David Huzzard and Alyssa Wolice agree that the team can't afford to lose its focus over the next two months. But, is it possible that Washington's schedule presents disadvantages for an October-bound team that likely won't play a "must-win" game again this season?

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Tuesday Breakdown: The Mysteries of International Signings

Hope you had a good 4th of July. Mine was pretty good until the illegal fireworks started getting set off and my dogs freaked out. There really isn’t much big Nats news from over the weekend. The Nats had a winning streak but that ended. They signed a bunch of teenagers to large contracts. It’s really hard to get excited about international signings. It’s the most the Nats have ever spent and they got some top ranked guys but they’re 16 and so far away from the majors.

Did you realize that 16 year olds were born in the year 2000? We’re a couple seasons away from having a major league baseball player that was born in the year 2000 and that is scary. Back to the international signing period and it’s lack of ability to excite people. The draft is somewhat exciting when you’re favorite team has the top pick and it’s a year that Stephen Strasburg or Bryce Harper are available. Those guys were hyped up and publicized long before the draft. I don’t even know who the first overall pick was this year and if the Nats pick weren’t related to a prospect already in their system I wouldn’t have remembered him either.

Now amplify how unknown the players are in the draft times a thousand and that is the international signing period. The players drafted at least have college or high school stats and accomplishments to list. The players signed as international free agents are just kids and a lot of them aren’t even playing with regulation baseball equipment. It makes a great story when they make it to the majors but for me, the common fan, to get excited about them at this stage is impossible.

Look at Victor Robles. He is on the fast track to the majors having just been promoted to Potomac and if he makes a two level jump again next season he has a chance to be a September call-up in 2017, and even that feels like too far away to get excited about. Part of it has to do with the Nats being good. The farm system was much more exciting when it was something that was going to save the team. Take Turner and Giolito for example. Giolito is the top prospect in all of baseball. The same as Strasburg and Harper and yet his debut and arrival to the majors was met with a hundredth of the excitement, and for Turner there is a segment of fans that don’t even want him in the majors.

Waiting for players like Robles, Turner, and Giolito is how Nats fans used to get their jollies. Now it’s turned to almost an extreme of some thinking call-ups will ruin team chemistry and send the Nats spiraling out of control. I think we can find a balance of being excited for the arrival of hot prospects and watching the team have success at the top level because they’re so interconnected, and in order to sustain success the Nats are going to have to keep increasing the power of the farm system.

Also before I close this out Zack Hample is an asshole.   

Monday Breakdown: The Nats' Bullpen

With Jonathan Papelbon on the 15-day disabled list with a right intercostal strain, the Washington Nationals have an even greater impetus to pad their bullpen. Citizens of Natstown's David Huzzard and Alyssa Wolice offer their takes on what the Nats should do to regain late-innings strength: namely, should the Nats take a shot at landing Aroldis Chapman? 

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2016 MLB Draft: Nats take three solid prospects on day one

The Nats lost 3-1 on Thursday evening, but it was still a productive night, as they added three solid prospects to the organization on Day 1 of the MLB draft. The addition of Daniel Murphy and the subtraction of Ian Desmond and Jordan Zimmermann left the Nationals with back-to-back picks at #28 and #29, as well as pick #58.

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