Dave Nichols of Nats News Network is a wonderful man for putting together the DC Internet Baseball Writers Association, which includes pre-and post-season awards voting by Nats blogs. Since the post-season award ballot got sent out today, I figured it was appropriate to re-visit the pre-season one now.
Here are the results from the pre-season questionable sent out by Dave in March:
1. Who will lead the Nats in home runs? Ryan Zimmerman (15 votes), Jayson Werth (4).
Barring a last week HR barrage by Danny Espinosa (19 HR) or Jayson Werth (19 HR), Morse has this one locked up (27 HR). Zimmerman is currently sixth on the squad with 12 HR, trailing the aforementioned three plus Laynce Nix (16 HR) and Wilson Ramos (13 HR).
2. Who will lead the Nats in RBIs? Zimmerman (10 votes), Werth (4) Adam LaRoche (4), Danny Espinosa (1).
Morse (86 RBI) wins this category as well despite receiving 0 votes. Espinosa is second on the team with 61 RBI, with Werth third (56 RBI), Zimmerman fourth (48 RBI) and Laroche twelfth (15 RBI).
3. Who will led the Nats in stolen bases? Nyjer Morgan (12), Espinosa (3), Ian Desmond (2), Roger Bernadina (1), Werth (1).
Can you believe it's just been six months since the Nats jettisoned the headache that is Nyjer Morgan/Tony Plush? Thank goodness he's gone. The poll was taken about two weeks before he was dealt, thus 12 first place votes. Morgan's 12 stolen bases would have only ranked fifth on the team this season, though, with Ian Desmond swiping 23, Werth and Bernadina grabbing 16 and Espinosa taking 14. I'll give the writers some credit here; they nailed the top 5 without any huge misses.
4. Who will lead the Nats in wins? Jordan Zimmermann (9), John Lannan (5), Livan Hernandez (2), Tom Gorzelanny (1), Tyler Clippard (1), Jason Marquis (1).
Lannan (9 wins) won this one with a little help from the month of September. While Lannan only has 1 victory in the month, both Livan Hernandez (8 wins) and Jordan Zimmermann (8 wins) have not pitched in the month. Amazingly, Jason Marquis ended up with 8 wins as well despite being traded at the deadline. Both Clippard and Gorzelanny have 3 wins to date (tied for eighth on the club with Chien-Ming Wang).
5. Who will lead the Nats in saves? Drew Storen (17), Sean Burnett (1), Todd Coffey (1).
I'm surprised nobody voted for Clippard here, to be honest. The only two pitchers with saves for the Nats this season were Storen (38 saves) and Burnett (4 saves).
6. Who will lead the Nats in starts? Hernandez (12), Lannan (5.5), Marquis (1.5).
Lannan has this one locked down, with 31 starts to date. Livan is second with 29, with Zimmermann (26) and Marquis (20) coming in third and fourth, respectively.
7. Which pitcher (Chien-Ming Wang, Yunesky Maya or Ross Detwiler) will make more starts for the Nats? Maya (8), Detwiler (8), Wang (3).
Oh ye of little faith! Wang has 10 starts for the Nats so far this season; Detwiler has 8 and Maya has 5. Both Wang and Detwiler have quietly put together pretty strong arguments for rotation spots next season.
8. Which utility player (Rick Ankiel, Jerry Hairston or Alberto Gonzalez) will get more at bats for the Nats? Ankiel (9), Hairston (8), Gonzalez (2).
Ankiel is currently 7th on the squad with 349 at-bats for the Nats (way too many, but that's another blog post). Hairston, somewhat surprisingly, is 10th with 213 AB's. Gonzalez was dealt to the Padres in late March and did not register an at-bat for the Nats.
9. Which catcher will get them most at bats for the Nats? Wilson Ramos (10), Ivan Rodriguez (7), Jesus Flores (2).
Ramos wins with 368 to date; Pudge is second with 118, with Flores scoring 78 AB's so far.
10. How many all-stars will the Nats have and whom? One (14), Two (5). Ryan Zimmerman (15), Jayson Werth (4), Danny Espinosa (1), Tyler Clippard (1), Jordan Zimmermann (1).
One person was right: Tyler Clippard was our sole rep.
11. Number of wins and place in division? Fourth (8), Fifth (6), Third (5). 82, 78, 77, 76 (3), 75 (4), 74, 73, 72 (3), 70, 68, 65, 58.
We'll revisit this in about a week, but the Nats have 72 wins and are in 3rd place so far.
12. Most important development for 2011? Develop young players (6), Recovery of Stephen Strasburg (4), the start of 2012 season (2), Development of Jordan Zimmermann (2), Development of young starting pitching (1), Development of team cohesion (1), Development of Desmond/Espinosa (1)
The "importance" can't really be measured, but Strasburg, Zimmermann, Ramos and Espinosa all developed nicely this season. Desmond was a disappointment and the young starting pitching, while not awful, has been a mixed bag, with Zimmermann having a great year but no other young starters making a real statement for a rotation spot behind them. Peacock and Milone had great minor league years and Detwiler pitched pretty well, but there was no 2008-era John Lannan this season (Lannan, by the way, is still only 26!).