Last Two Weeks: 2-10
Place: Last in MLB.
Where do you start with a team that’s 12 games out of fourth place? Let’s start with what’s (finally) working. Since firing pitching coach Randy St. Claire, the Nats bullpen is no longer the fountain of pure suck that it was for the first 50 games of the season. The bullpen’s a lot more aggressive under the emotional and spiritual leadership of the Nats’ own Angry Old Man Ron Villone. Over his traditional breakfast of nails and the internal organs of his enemies, Villone grunted, and then stared at his 0.00 ERA. The message was clear.
Villone, 39, is one of the bright spots that the Nats have right now. His command, a product of his intense stare, and ripping fastball, will be fantastic for the Nats if they can somehow find some way to reverse the aging process with some voodoo curse. Meanwhile, the draft is tomorrow starting at 6pm, with the Nats picking 1st, 10th and 50th. The draft boards at Nats Park are a closely-guarded secret, but they’d have to be huffing more paint fumes than your average city official not to take Steven Strasburg with the first pick. With any luck, someone has also incapacitated the Lerner family heads and taken their checkbooks, because that’s a guy who’s going to cost you $50 million. Yeah, for someone who’s never pitched outside of college. He’s just that awesome. (We hope.)
So, there’s a future on the horizon for the worst team in baseball, much like there was a future for the 2007 66-96 Tampa Bay Devil Rays who went to the playoffs in 2008. So, don’t be reaching for the hari kiri sword, Nats fans, just reach for the bottle. This is a season to be endured, with the knowledge that there’s a future on the horizon.
Read on for coverage of D.C. United & the Mystics
Last Two Weeks: 1-1
Place: 2nd in the East
Dear Pink Cows. Thank you for showing up this weekend, it was great to see you. Thanks also for bringing us the Atlantic Cup Trophy and letting us take it without so much as a squeak or even a moo. If there’s one team in the MLS that D.C. United beats like a rented a mule, it’s the New York Red Bulls. This is the 7th time in 8 years that we’ve taken the Atlantic Trophy (for whomever wins the season series between the DC & NY squads). The 2-0 result on a soaking wet Thursday night at RFK was a one-sided affair, even though DC’s Luciano Emilio got the boot in the 64th minute for using that word you just don’t use with officials.
The other match from the last two weeks wasn’t quite as positive, a 2-1 loss to the hated New England Revolution. A late and controversial penalty would be the difference between a draw and a victory, which left United looking for answers and finding none. What had started as a great game, the result was one mired in second guessing.
D.C. United is off this week, but faces off against the Chicago Fire at RFK on 13 June.
Last Two Weeks: 2-0
That’s right, WNBA is here again! Welcome to the Mystics Rookie Marissa Coleman, who picked up 16 points in the opener against Connecticut, has high hopes for a solid season. Coleman excelled at Maryland, with one of just 9 players with 1500 career points with the Terps. Look for her to make a big difference off the bench with the squad this year.
The season’s just getting off the ground, and the Mystics play two on the road versus Detroit and Atlanta before coming home to play Chicago on the 20th. I’d love to give you more information on the squad, but I want to talk about how ESPN treats women’s sports on their website. Unlike the NBA and other sports, the WNBA has to share its section with the NCAA Women’s Basketball section, giving the NCAA top billing. None of the statistics for the 2009 are up yet. The standings are just plain wrong. It’s embarrassing. If you want the league to succeed, and I have to believe that with all the lip service that ESPN gives to Title IX in college sports that they do, you have to give it the staffing that it deserves.