We’re only four days away from 19-31 Day, when assignment editors will demand that writers all over the nation’s capital produce 19-31 Nationals stories on the one-year anniversary of the low point of the 2019 campaign, before Washington’s World Series champions turned it all around. Saturday’s link post should be epic. Or maybe Sunday’s, or Monday’s, we’ve kind of been super-lazy and taking Sunday’s off till baseball’s back. Today, it’s just normal-ish-ish links. Okay, there’s one 19-31 story already down there. I think we’ll just resurface the how’d they do from 19-31 to the Series story from earlier this winter over the weekend. No one will notice, right? [ed. note - “Not unless you tell everyone, Dumb Dumb.”] Go read your links...
MLB's detailed plans mean one thing: They shouldn't play ball ... yet - (NBC Sports Washington)
"Baseball is missed. That’s not in dispute. But, there is one large, looming question hanging over all the details: Is this worth it?"
The reported details in MLB’s 67-page health protocol proposal led to a bigger question: Is this all worth it?— Todd Dybas (@Todd_Dybas) May 18, 2020
The answer to me, for now, seems to be no.https://t.co/5qg2sw5Xys
State of the Nats roster: Rotation - (MASN)
"The Nationals have one of the best rotations in baseball. That much we’ve known all along. But is it possible this group might prove even more valuable if given an opportunity to pitch in 2020?"
Behind the scenes of the Nats’ 19-31 disaster, which was brewing a year ago today - (NBC Sports Washington)
“Moves were happening. Tanner Rainey debuted that night. Javy Guerra was claimed off waivers. Dan Jennings was designated for assignment. Rizzo was knee-deep in the grand chore of trying to fix the bullpen.”
Mike Trout says Max Scherzer is best pitcher he's faced: 'I was happy he left' for National League - (Washington Times)
"Los Angeles Angels star Mike Trout has big praise for Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer."
Nationals coaches boast more than 4,600 big league games of catching experience - (MASN)
"The Nationals coaching staffs - up and down the organization and in the front office - possess a ton of big league catching experience to help the younger backstops make it up through each level."
Hagerstown City Council candidates Q&A - (heraldmailmedia.com)
"Q: How big of a priority is building a new stadium? A: Very big. I believe a new stadium should be built downtown. We have the luxury of having the Hagerstown Suns playing in this town, which is a representative of an MLB team. Not just any team either — the world champion Washington Nationals. A stadium downtown would also be an opportunity for a large-scale entertainment venue to hold any number of events."
Why the biggest obstacle for MLB’s success might not be money or safety – (The Athletic)
"Ryan Zimmerman’s wife Heather — due to give birth to the couple’s third child this summer — mentioned last month should a quarantine scenario exist they probably wouldn’t see Ryan for a few months."
MLB: How DH would affect every National League team - (Sports Illustrated)
"Washington Nationals: With the Nationals’ decision to bring back Ryan Zimmerman and Howie Kendrick while also signing Eric Thames and Starlin Castro, you could be forgiven for the idea that they somehow saw this coming."
NL EAST UPDATES:
MLB's COVID-19 safety protocols include some big, complicated hurdles for players - (NBC Sports Philadelphia)
"Salisbury said he sees some rules that will be tough for players to embrace, and others that seem hard to enforce."
Mets coaches are 'Leighton Strong' in rallying around coach's daughter - (Yahoo!Sports)
"Her name is Leighton Accardo. She is 8. She’s had some difficult days, enough of them to add up to a year, what with the surgeries and the treatments and all the serious conversations about what the tests show and what’s next."
COVID-19: Marlins to begin optional workouts at team facility Tuesday - (Fish Stripes)
"The Marlins’ complex in Jupiter is hosting optional workouts for 40-man roster players beginning on Tuesday."
How Acuña stacks up through age-21 season - (MLB.com)
"According to Baseball Reference’s Play Index, Acuña is one of 52 players in MLB history to have collected 1,200-plus plate appearances while playing in at least 265 games through his 21-year-old season."