Nationals Baseball: Expectation Check

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Expectation Check

The Nats are off for a quick road trip.  Three in San Diego to face a bad Padres team, and three in LA with the league leading (and lucky) Dodgers.  A good team would be expected to win 2 out of 3 versus the lowly Pads, even on the road, and take a game from the Dodgers setting up a 3-3 road trip.  That's what a good team would do. A GREAT team though would go 4-2 or 5-1 even.  (granted this is all of course with the usual small sample caveats and in any 6 game stretch a good team could go 6-0 or 0-6, etc. etc.)

Now that the Nats are 12-4 what are you expecting? Not what you want, mind you, but what do you think is a fair guess of how well the Nats would do and if they don't get that you'd say they failed. Would 3-3 disappoint?

25 comments:

Maggie said...

I definitely see 4-2 as a realistic expectation, but wouldn't be disappointed with 3-3. If we win 50% of all our road trips, that's fine with me. Anything less than 3-3 would be a disappointment.

michael k said...

Considering it's a west coast road trip, and three games are against a hot team, you really can't be disappointed with 3-3. But with the nasty rotation the Nats have, especially with the way they've been performing recently, the heart wants more than .500. So let's shoot for 4-2.

Oh, what do I expect? With this team, that's really impossible to say. They're hot so it's hard to say anything lower than 4-2, but with their hitting they can fall into a really nasty funk. And you're right that a team would have to be "great" to expect more than 3-3 on this roadtrip, which the Nats are not.

K-Ray said...

my high end expectation for the month of april was 15-8. With the rainout 3-3 on this roadtrip would put the nats at 15-7 which would definitely meet my best scenario pre-april expectations so I could not be happier with a 3-3 roadtrip, That 6-0 sounds good though.

Jeff Hayes said...

I expect 2-1 or 3-0 against the Padres. With the Dodgers, I think it is too early to judge how we'll do. That series will be an excellent azimuth check to help us determine just how real our 12-4 record is. I expect either 2-1 or 1-2 there. So total, I expect the road trip to end somewhere between 3-3 and 5-1. Let's call it 4-2.

Bryan said...

On the road, West Coast... 3-3 is fine with me, though obviously I'd love 4-2, which isn't as impossible as it sounds with the Padres being 3 of those games.

Coming off the beating of the biteless Phils I actually think the Pads could lose all 3. As long as the Nats aren't 3-3 based on beating the Pads 3 times, I'm ok.

cass said...

I was already thinking about this, actually, and came out to about 3.2-2.5. I'd be disappointed ever so slightly with 3-3 but I'd be slightly pleasantly surprised by 4-2.

Essentially, I expect them to go 2-1 against the Padres and split the series with the Dodgers. But they can't split the series since it's only 3 games.

Put another way: 3-3, I take the over. 4-2, I take the under.

Positively Half St. said...

I expect 4-2. I should get used to being disappointed.

+1/2St.

Nick said...

3-3 would be terrific. My goal for the Nationals is to go .500 on the road this year. Successful teams split on the road and win at home.

Anonymous said...

3-3 disappoints me...I'd be happy with 4-2.

Me said...

I think a better question is: which number will be higher, the Nats' runs per game or the total number of wins?

I'll answer both questions however because I'm not being held to it. Nats win 4. Nats score 20 runs for 3.3 rpg.

Bonus non-binding prediction: ZNN won't benefit from any of those runs.

Nattydread said...

Reason says 3-3.

Heart says 4-2.

I fear Kemp.

Donald said...

In terms of match-ups, the Padres aren't particularly strong against lefties, and Gio is going up against their #3, I think. So we should be favored tonight. I'd also like to think we'd be favored when ZNN goes against Wieland who hasn't been that effective (7 ERs in 11 innings). I might give the edge to the Padres in game 3 when their 'Ace' goes against EJax, but that's marginal. So I say 2-1 in that series.

Against the Dodgers, as much as I like Detwiler, the edge in game 1 obviously lies with the home team and Kershaw. Strasburg and Gio against their #2 and #3 are probably our best shots. I say 1-2 in that series with our bullpen blowing a save opportunity in one of those last two games after the starter pitches strong.

I'd be plenty happy with them returning 3-3 on this trip.

Anonymous said...

Less than 3-3 would be a disappointment. Fun fact to expand on this expected 3-3 or 4-2 road trip: If the Nats play .500 ball the rest of the year they finish with 85 wins. So this hot start is kinda nice when you think about that. With this pitching staff, anything less than .500 the rest of the way seems really really unlikely or terribly unlucky.

blovy8 said...

I'm expecting 4-2, if any team can compete in low-run environments on the road, it's this one. The Padres stink. The Dodgers have some relievers that walk people, we just have to wear down the starters and stay close. Jansen is pretty scary though. They've been beating up on worse clubs than the Nats have, but something tells me the the team is due for some ugly defense that loses a game that ought to be in the win column. Also, Nady hits a homer in SD for sure.

Marc said...

I was thinking 3-3 before I actually looked at the Pads. They're really weak - in that park, with our pitching, they might struggle to score in the double digits the whole series. Of course, so might we. Still, though, I think that's somewhere between "take two" and "sweep."

Totally agree the LA series is a good first reality check. I think we win on Sunday and then Friday and Saturday are tossups, with us being more likely to lose Friday and win Saturday.

In short, I agree with Cass - my expectation level is 3.5-2.5, so I'll be optimistic and say 4-2.

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Ben said...

It is amazing to me how much respect the Dodgers are getting for beating up the scrawniest kids on the block (San Diego might even be in a wheelchair). As easy as the Nats schedule has been, the Dodgers has been even easier! This is the same mediocre Dodgers team as last year with a few guys playing way over their heads (Ethier with 22 RBI ... WTF? if he has 120 on the season I'll eat Harper's HAT).

Therefore I declare a ridiculous expectation of 5-1 (sorry Padres in wheelchairs, Nats must crush you now ... by a run or two).

Anonymous said...

3-3? These are not last years Nationals.

They will go 5-1. 4-2 at the worst.

Hoo said...

With Zim banged up, 3-3 would be fine. No Zim means Dez/Espi have to come through b/c Nady, LaRosa, Ankiel aren't scary at all

Taylor said...

I'd be even okay with 2-4. The Nats haven't lost a series. It'll be sad to see that end, but they'll survive.

Froggy said...

This road trip presents one of many confidence litmus tests the Nats face this year, and I WANT them to go 5-1 or 4-2.

Chavez Ravine can be a pitchers park, so I expect 3-3 if we get run support for ZMN (finally?) and if Jackson gets shelled again...or not.

Hoo said...

By banged up, I meant Zim is getting an MRI on the shoulder. 3-3 would be dandy if Zim isn't back till next week or later.

Ollie said...

No way we should be disappointed by 3-3 unless they lose 3 bad ones to the Dodgers (or the Padres...yikes). I think 4-2 is a realistic hope though. 5-1 or 6-0 and they're the number one story in baseball next week.

If they keep hitting this way I don't see that happening, but as a fan I certainly hope for it.

On a different note I just heard Carpenter and Santangelo effusively praise Nady for grounding to first. Not that it was a bad play on his part (2 strike count and all) but oy vey, if our offense relies on that we will have problems down the road.

Sec 204 Row H Seat 7 said...

I am cheating here as the NATS are already 1-0 on the road trip but Zim is going to the doctor. So, 3-3would be great while 4-2 would be super great. Espi and La Roche will have to get hot and Desi and Werth continue their good work for 4-2. But this rotation is solid gold.

@michael k

Still too early to say what this team is.

Tammy said...

I expect 4-2. I should get used to being disappointed. +1/2St.