Greetings, my fellow port swillers!
Well, spring training 2016 is now officially underway and ol’ Robbo is starting to get seriously excited about Opening Day, which, for his beloved Nationals, is set for April 4 on the road in Atlanta.
While in past years I have made fearless predictions regarding the Nats’ prospects for the season, this time I find myself shrugging my shoulders and shaking my head in ambivalent silence. There are so many unknown and unknowable variables in the mix – new manager, some new position players, new starter rotation, new bullpen combinations – that I simply haven’t the faintest idea what’s going to happen over the summah.
Most of the prognostications I’ve read so far predict that the Mets are going to take the division again, with the Nats hovering somewhere just behind them. I’m not so sure about that because I think the Mets’ reputation is somewhat overblown. Yes, they made the Series last fall. But they played well above themselves last year, especially at the end of the season, in what I still think was something of an adrenaline-fueled fluke. I’m not a’tall sure they can repeat that. Also, the Nats beat themselves last season, what with injuries, bad managing and general malaise, playing below themselves. If the team gets itself together, it’ll roll all over the Mets. (And the rest of the div. Get outa here, Miami!)
Of course, as I mention above, that’s a mighty big “if”.
I shrug my shoulders once again. What else can one say except