The Nationals are Sad, And Now We Have To Deal With The Cubs Again

If you were to look up the definition of postseason failures in the Webster’s dictionary it would tell you to see the Washington Nationals. There should be a frowny face on the capital building. They just can’t win in the playoffs. They just can’t make it work, and it’s possible they may never win in October. The duds in Washington blew another one dropping game 5 of the NLDS in the nation’s capital. Now we have to deal with the Cubs again. Who could have seen this coming? Probably everyone I’m guessing.

I know what many of you are thinking. You might be happy the Cubs won and that we get another NLCS rematch because you want revenge or something. I would like that too, and believe me I have no love for the Nationals. But I must warn you, the Cubs are still really good. They’re not to be trifled with. This year the Dodgers are the 104 win team with home field advantage, but that doesn’t matter much. The Cubs are still annoyingly fierce. They’re also still the defending World Series champions.

I wanted to see the Cubs lose because I don’t want to deal with them, but there was little chance the failure laden Nationals were going to beat them. You didn’t actually have confidence in the Nationals winning a playoff series did you? The Cubs are insufferable and I can’t stand them. However it’s no shocker that we have a Cubs/Dodgers NLCS again.

Getting back to the Nationals though, my goodness they are pathetic. They are the epitome of playoff losing. The Nationals have now lost four consecutive division series, three of them by way of game five at home. That’s about as brutal as you can get. In 2012 they blew a 7-1 lead to the Cardinals in game 5 of the NLDS at home. In 2014 they lost in four games to the Giants, and in 2016 they lost to the Dodgers in five games as well. Last year the Dodgers beat them by a run in their home ball park with Clayton Kershaw recording the final two outs in the bottom of the ninth with the tying and winning runs on base. Now this year they fall to the Cubs. At least the Dodgers have won some postseason series before their inevitable chokes.

Washington manager Dusty Baker is one of the worst decision makers on the planet, but Washington has a very talented roster so it’s a mystery why they can’t win. So brutal! We were all hoping that the game would go like 22 innings with each club using all of their pitchers. At least both clubs used up most of their pitchers with the Cubs using Jose Quintana in relief. Wade Davis made over 40 pitches to close out the game.

But good grief the Nationals are sad. There should be an exhibit dedicated to their inability to win playoff games. You could sell tickets to that showcase of ineptitude. Oh well. The Dodgers will get another crack to beat the Cubs in the NLCS. Game 1 starts at 5:08 PM PST on Saturday night. You guys remember the t.v. show Capital Critters?

Scott Andes

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Former Co-editor of Lasorda’s Lair. Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
Twitter

25 thoughts on “The Nationals are Sad, And Now We Have To Deal With The Cubs Again

  1. I think the Nationals had the more dangerous pitching staff. Outside of Hendricks, who was nails, none of their starters pitched exceptionally well. Hendricks did the same thing to the Dodgers last year. But the others, they can be had. The weather in Chicago is the big it factor for me. You know those middle 3 games are going to be played in lousy weather. Russo will be the main factor at the plate for the Cubbies. The Dodgers have handled Bryant pretty well in the past. I think they need to sweep at home and get at least 1 of the 3 at Wrigley, if they get 2 all that much better.

    1. Agreed Norris. I can’t wait to see the Cubs go down. We have the better team and will prevail. Nats choked big time. Their vaunted pitching melted down and they will remember this for a long time. The Nats were the better team, but the big games are the ones that count.

      What will our rotation look like for the first 3 games? Will Wood open the series?

  2. I would love to see Kershaw and Darvish for Games 1 and 2, then Hill at Wrigley. I think Hill’s off speed and breaking stuff will play up in cold and/or lousy weather in Wrigley.

    Of the Cubs starters, finesse guys like Hendricks and Quintana could give us fits, but I am not sure the Cubs have the firepower to put us away early. I like our chances against their middle relievers. Wade Davis is a real fighter, but we have a couple of nice lefty pinch hitters for the late innings (Ethier, Utley). Overall I think we match up well against the Cubs. I like Cingrani especially – his repertoire seems ideal against the Cubs’ lefty hitters.

    I agree Addison Russell and Baez could get hot, as could Schwarber. Then again our Grandal could get hot too. Maybe.

    I thought the Nationals hitters were more disciplined than the Cubs. Both teams were chasing high pitches at the end, however.

    1. YF

      Russell got us last year, so we can’t let him beat us again.

      Baez is easy to pitch to, as long as a pitcher, doesn’t miss there spot.

      One thing is for sure, the Cubs lefties can hit lefties.

      Hendricks was throwing a lot of his pitches up, and if he does that against our are hitters, they will hit his 88 mile fastball.

      But Hendricks pitched perfectly against us last year, in that last game!

  3. If the MLB can use replay to see that a guys toe nail came off the bag and is tagged out, there is no reason that balls and strikes shouldn’t face up to the same scrutiny. Balls and strikes are called hundreds of times in a ballgame, thus more opportunity to affect the outcome of a ballgame, while tags on runners are only called a few times in a game. Hope you saw that pick off of the Nats runner on first base last night. So the MLB uses technology for one call and yet doesn’t use it for other calls, this is madness. If one type of call is important enough to use replay then other types of calls are important enough to use an electronic strike zone. If not, scrap both systems. What’s right is right, use of technology to get calls correct is right and child molestation and abuse is still wrong (a pubic service announcement).

  4. It was really unfair and I think that rule might be changed. It just goes against the law of physics to expect a foot-first slide to remain in the bag. In this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics!

    That said, for the remainder of the playoffs I hope to see every Dodger go to a headfirst slide when being picked off!

  5. Well, all the pundits and analysts were totally wrong, most picked the Nationals or Dbacks to play the Native Americans in the WS, with the winner being the Native Americans. I love those guys.

    Give up, it is over, the Cubs win the post season hands down! Yup, you read it here first, the Cubs won the most hideously played game of this post season, possibly of any post season. That game had about every hideous element of playing the game of baseball. Dramatic, but just hideous, this game should never be allowed to be seen by any little leaguers, it was that bad. That was some awful baseball, possibly every player in this game should be cut and not allowed to play in the MLB ever again. Those guys would get benched in a beer league slow pitch softball game.

  6. I agree with Michael, that the Nats had better starting pitching , then the Cubs do, and that is why I wanted the Cubs to win.

    Also the Nats built the remainder of there bullpen, and got there closer, with pitchers from the American League, so our team hadn’t seen those pitchers much, and that is another reason, I wanted the Cubs to win too.

    Also I think it is big that we have the homefield advantage, because of the weather, like Michael mentioned.

    I know we will have to play two games in Chicago, but at least we have three games in LA, if we need it.

    This just isn’t the same Cubs team, from last year!

    They have not played that well, this year.

    You have to remember most teams that do win it all, have to have some luck on their side, and the Cubs were the team of destiny last year, they not only played well as a team, they also had some luck go there way too.

    If it doesn’t start raining last year, in that seventh game, I don’t think the Cubs would have won that last game, against Cleveland.

    Everyone wanted the Cubs to win last year, and I don’t think that will be as bad this year, even though we will definitely have to deal with the East Coast bias!

    I hope we don’t play the Astros if we go farther, and that is only because they will probably be the darlings, of the post season, because of what happened in Houston, just recently.

    1. MJ, 7 game series…..2 at home, 3 on the road, 2 at home. Same set up as the World Series. I prefer playing the Yanks in the World Series because their pitching is weaker than the Astros, but those bats! Wow….they have some serious power but they strike out a lot.

      1. Michael

        Thanks for telling me , about schedule, my brother just said that same thing, and I guess I was thinking about the five game series.

        I think the Astros only have two really good starters, and the Yankees have such a tough bullpen, so either team, is going to be tough to beat!

  7. One big difference between last years team and this years. We have a real lead off hitter this time. And we have a big bopper in the 4 hole. Adrian was ok last year, but Cody is a difference maker. Seager held out of workouts to rest his back and elbow. Back problems at age 23? Not a good sign.

  8. I want a Dodgers/Yankees WS. Two reasons: Classic Matchup of Baseball Lore and our pitching can handle their hitting and their pitching can’t handle our hitting (unless we have RISP, lol). However, playing the Stankees brings weather into the picture, playing the Astros doesn’t bring weather into the picture.

    Are the Nationals the modern day Cubs? I think so, never have won a playoff series, and Dusty Baker is O for forever as a playoff series manager.

    Enough of the east coast bias from the announcers, it gets old and tiresome, at least we don’t have to listen to Joe Morgan acting like a total asshole in his coverage of the Dodgers anymore.

    What network has the WS this year? Please don’t let it be TBS, they are just horrendous in the booth or at least the dimwits that we have had so far have been.

        1. Ed

          All of that is true!

          Those other announcers said so many things that were just not true.

          Like Puig is not accurate with his arm.

          They were the most unprofessional announcers, I have ever saw!

  9. Strategy against the Cubs is likely the same as against the Nationals. Wear out the starters and get to the bullpen early, even if we are not getting hits. Remember against Robbie Ray, he had a no hitter going against us through 4, but we had made him throw 90 pitches. Same thing needs to happen (but hopefully with more hitting and scoring). The Cubs staff have one thing in common with the DBacks, which is a lack of power strikeout starters. But the Cubs starters do have better control overall so we have to lay off the high pitches and protect the plate.

    Once we get to the bullpen the Cubs also have the same problem as the DBacks. Edwards has not been good in the postseason and Maddon was quick to yank him last night. Outside of Wade Davis I don’t see anyone else who is a real threat, so essentially they are like what we were last year when our regular bullpen was down to Jansen, Blanton and Dayton. They have Strop, Montgomery and Davis. They have to rely on their starters in key spots and will have to use Wade Davis a lot. Another wildcard we can throw out there in Games 6 and 7 is to use Darvish as a power strikeout reliever. Darvish will pitch Game 3 so it means Kershaw and Rich Hill if the series comes back to LA. I am sure that was the thought process for Roberts when he set the lineup.

  10. It will be nice to beat Lester for once!

    He doesn’t look all that, but he has been pretty successful in the post season.

    I hope Hendricks throws as many pitches up, he did against the Nats, because he was almost perfect against us.

    I think Kershaw pitches better, in his next start too.

    I think since the team plays as a team, and everyone is contributing, that may take some of the pressure off Kershaw, as well, as the way we swept the Dbacks, should make him feel it is not all, on him.

  11. Lester or Quintana for game 1 vs Kershaw. Should be interesting to see if Roberts sticks with Barnes vs a lefty. Grandal has been catching Kershaw most of the time and did so against Ray in the NLDS. Personally, I like Barnes approach at the plate MUCH better than Grandal’s.

    1. Actually, it is Quintana or Lackey….Lester pitched in the clincher as did Arietta. Their starting rotation is all out of whack.

      1. Oh no!! Seager will not play during this series. He is injured and off the roster. This is a major blow to the Dodgers and their chances.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Optionally add an image (JPEG only)