Write Derek at drksmart @ gmail.com
Write Phil at phil.bencomo @ gmail.com
My Crappy Team Is Better Than Your Crappy Team
by Derek Smart
Look above for what I'd say if a Nats fan asked me what I'd learned from the past couple of games, particularly last night, when Sean Marshall wasn't locked in, yet still managed to yield only one hit in his six innings of work.
Some of it was Marshall managing to keep the Nats hitters off balance with pitch selection, but mostly it seemed that the opposition was simply unable to capitalize on the multiple occasions when Marshall was unable to execute his plan. Not that Marshall didn't pitch decently - he did - but a better team would have been able to cross the plate at least a couple times last night.
Offensively, the Cubs were helped tremendously by the Nats infield defense, which was lousy again, with the worst offender being Damian Jackson at short. When a guy makes you pine for Royce Clayton, he's not exactly doing his job.
Add in Ryan Zimmerman's run-scoring error in the first, and the multiple times when a well-positioned mitt-tree dropping its fruit at random intervals would have outplayed Jose Vidro, and you've got a large portion of the explanation for the relative offensive explosion the Cubs have been enjoying over the last two evenings.
Again, life intervenes and I must cut short, although I'm hoping for a little more time later on, as I do have some specific observations I'd love to get out here. However, the hope for such a thing looks slim, so keep your fingers crossed that Aramis is good to go, and let's enjoy the fact that one of the wounded returns today.