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New Blogs!

I must confess this: I'm a terrible "site administrator." Look at the sidebar, if you care---I haven't really updated the thing since late summer. It must be overhauled in the coming weeks.

Consequently, I've fallen behind on new blogs. I don't mean to; quite to the contrary, I have a very liberal policy with respect to links. You email asking for a link, and post the link. People did that for me when I first started, and I think that's the most equitable way to go. Furthermore, if I see other blogs have linked to new blogs, I'll usually notice those new blogs and toss up a link of my own volition.

Historically, this is a fertile time for new Nats blogs. Every year, new ones pop up in February or March. In many or most cases, they shut down in March or April. I don't think this is because the "Natosphere" is unwelcoming. In fact, this seems one of the more collegial baseball "blogospheres" out there. There might have been a couple of spats here and there, but no one has ever been accused of having carnal knowledge with a goat; on teh internets, that's a model of civility. But blogs shut down for a variety of reasons, most probably related to available time. It happens, and it's understandable---no one around here has signed a contract or faces a gun pointed at his or her head.

Anyway, I hope all of the new blogs live long and prosper. The more, the merrier; blogging is by no means a zero-sum game.

So here's a list of new (or relatively new) Nats blogs out there in cyberspace. The list is probably incomplete, so if there are any I missed, I'd appreciate knowing.

At some unspecified point in the future, I am going to rearrange my sidebar links to incorporate the new, preserve the old, and honor the dead.

Nats Blog: It's still real to me, damnit, it's still real to me!

* * * *

Baseball Prospectus ("Subscribe Today!") is running a fascinating if cynically-titled series called "Hope & Faith"* in which its authors evaluate each big league team with an eye toward what needs to happen for that team to win it all. Maury Brown, the business of baseball guy, gets the call for the Nats---a bit of an odd call, considering the franchise is solidly under the control of legitimate ownership, with a new ballpark thirteen months from operational status. (Then again, Maury is a moderator on what must be considered the most frequented Nats message board.)

Maury does a rather by-the-numbers appraisal of where the Nats are and where they are going; this is appropriate enough, since I cannot imagine that many of BPro's readers care much about the prospects of the 2007 Washington Nationals. In other words, somebody had to write this article, and Maury hits the notables: (1) What about Nick Johnson? (2) What's going on with that rotation? (3) Hey, that bullpen doesn't look too bad! and (4) Jim Bowden---Super Genius??!!!

Maury's bottom line:

What's the Recipe For a Nationals World Series Win?: Suspend disbelief. Envision projections for the NL East standings being upside down. See Patterson staying healthy, Zimmerman being an All-Star, Nick Johnson miraculously back in perfect health, and the collection of prospects performing beyond what anyone predicted. Then, envision Frank Howard discovering the Fountain of Youth, and séance bringing Walter Johnson back from the grave.

Reasonable enough! I'd also add dogs and cats living together, but Maury probably wasn't gunning for completeness.

I am certain somebody, somewhere out there will view this article as unduly negative and consequently will take offense. If that's you, get over it. This series is about "hope & faith" for 2007, and these Nats have little of that stuff. It means nothing about "The Plan."

Incidentally, I'm currently reading a book that the publisher asked me (as well as probably a thousand other blogs) to review. After that, I'm going to pick up the new edition of Baseball Prospectus and compose my annual Nats-centric BPro review. So expect that sometime soon.

*Around the time of his so-called Blue Ribbon Committee's report, Bud Selig preached on each team having "hope and faith" at the outset of the season---or as many teams as possible. For awhile, it was said only a half-dozen teams had a real shot each season, which I found odd considering eight teams make the postseason. At any rate, MLB did alter its economics a tad, the Yankees started screwing up in the playoffs, and now Bud's reasonably satisfied with the game.