At long last, the most uneventful MLB offseason in recent memory is coming to a close. The seemingly endless cycle of stories about disgruntled agents and owners denying accusations of collusion will be replaced with highlight reels of Bryce Harper hitting the daylight out of baseballs and Max Scherzer racking up strikeout after strikeout.
With the team traveling north from the sunny West Palm Beach to the cold and windy District of Columbia, Federal Baseball has put together a list of predictions for the upcoming baseball campaign.
The Washington Nationals are once again heralded as one of the best teams in the league, but repeated disappointing playoff performances have tempered expectations for the club.
Before we jump into the predictions themselves, here’s a quick rundown of the writers here at FBB who are participating in this exercise — and in turn opening themselves up to the inevitable scrutiny in the comments and on social media that comes with making such guesses.
- Patrick Reddington – The man, the myth, the legend … the Editor-in-Chief
- Will Kubzansky – Wire Taps extraordinaire
- Ryan McFadden – DMV sports fanatic
- Matt Weyrich – The author of your least favorite hot takes
Who will lead the Nationals’ offense in home runs? How many?
Patrick Reddington: Bryce Harper, 43
Will Kubzansky: Bryce Harper, 35
Ryan McFadden: Bryce Harper, 40
Matt Weyrich: Ryan Zimmerman, 32
How many stolen bases will Trea Turner have?
Patrick Reddington: 67
Will Kubzansky: 52
Ryan McFadden: 45
Matt Weyrich: 71
How many games will Victor Robles play?
Patrick Reddington: 50
Will Kubzansky: 12
Ryan McFadden: 20
Matt Weyrich: 35
Who will lead Nationals’ outfielders in assists? How many?
Patrick Reddington: Michael Taylor, 7
Will Kubzansky: Adam Eaton, 9
Ryan McFadden: Michael Taylor, 10
Matt Weyrich: Bryce Harper, 8
How many Nationals pitchers will finish in the top 10 of Cy Young voting?
Patrick Reddington: 2
Will Kubzansky: 2
Ryan McFadden: 2
Matt Weyrich: 3 (Nats have done this twice since 2014 — only team in baseball)
How many strikeouts will Max Scherzer have?
Patrick Reddington: 277
Will Kubzansky: 267
Ryan McFadden: 259
Matt Weyrich: 242
How many times will the pitcher hit eighth in the lineup?
Patrick Reddington: Too often, 25 games
Will Kubzansky: 24
Ryan McFadden: 15
Matt Weyrich: 40
What holes will the Nationals be trying to fill at the trade deadline?
Patrick Reddington: 3rd/5th starter
Will Kubzansky: Catcher, eighth-inning/closer
Ryan McFadden: Catcher
Matt Weyrich: Middle infielder
Which Nationals will make the All-Star Game?
Patrick Reddington: Max Scherzer, Bryce Harper, Stephen Strasburg
Will Kubzansky: Max Scherzer, Bryce Harper, Stephen Strasburg, Adam Eaton, Sean Doolittle
Ryan McFadden: Max Scherzer, Bryce Harper, Stephen Strasburg, Trea Turner
Matt Weyrich: Max Scherzer, Bryce Harper, Stephen Strasburg, Anthony Rendon
How many wins will the Nationals have?
Patrick Reddington: 96
Will Kubzansky: 93
Ryan McFadden: 95
Matt Weyrich: 100
How many teams from the NL East will make the postseason? Which ones?
Patrick Reddington: 2, Nats & Mets
Will Kubzansky: 2, Nats & Phillies
Ryan McFadden: 1, Nats
Matt Weyrich: 2, Nats & Phillies
How far will the Nationals go in the playoffs, if at all?
Patrick Reddington: Lose NLCS
Will Kubzansky: First round exit. Again. Sigh.
Ryan McFadden: Lose NLCS
Matt Weyrich: Lose NLCS
And there they are! Got some thoughts on how the Nats will do this year? Let us know in the comments below so that the record shows you were right and we were wrong once the dust settles at the end of the year.