First off, two announcements. I'm going to have as many as two weekly columns over at Baseball Bias, so go check them out if you're left feeling empty and unsatisfied after your daily dose of Distinguished Senators. Or maybe, like, talk to a priest or something. Anyway, here's the first one. It's long. And register in the Baseball Bias forums, where you can talk to me -- live!
Meanwhile, I'm instituting a new feature here at DS. I was thinking about how no one on our team is going to lead the league in anything important and about how much I love ¡Livan!, and that's when I got the idea for the ¡Livanometer! Because if any National is going to lead the league in something, it'll be Livan and innings. The ¡Livanometer! will keep track of how many innings El Gran Cubano pitches as well as the total for the league leader. It's not off to a great start, but the longest, fattest journey begins with a single mediocre start.
On to the game! I didn't get to watch one single pitch of one single inning of this game. You know, the next time I see some tweed-wearing fruit-booty who gets all lit up on sepia-toned nostalgia and starts mewling about how there should be more day games for the purity of baseball, I'm going to crush the bridge of his nose with my forehead and scream, "I work for a living, motherfucker!" I hope by these actions to convince him that he shouldn't spend his sabbatical reading Bart Giamatti because it will give him wrong ideas about things. Then I'm going to peer around with a scary look on my face and blood trickling down my head and bellow, "Alright, now where's Costas?!"
As far as the actual game, there are two things to think about:
1) The Nationals are not very good.
2) The Nationals were not very good.
"Were not," in this case, refers to today, but I didn't want to ruin the symmetry of the two statements. Certainly, it looked like 2005 all over again: mediocre but acceptable starting pitching, good bullpen, powerless and ineffective offense, base running blunders. So, while it's hella stupid to start drawing conclusions from the events of one game, you can't help but get the feeling that we're settling into a familiar groove, much like Orioles fans must feel when the Birds slide smoothly into fourth place.
It may be worth noting that base running messed us up even though we're supposed to be improved in that department. But a bad driver doesn't become good when he gets a faster car; he merely becomes more efficient in injuring himself. I guess the driver in this soon-to-be-abandoned metaphor is Frank or whoever makes the actual decisions while Frank thinks about golf and Lakers tickets. Oh, and here's where I abandon the metaphor: it wasn't Soriano or Watson who blew it for us, it was Vidro. So, a bad driver doesn't become good when he gets a faster car but insists on driving the old one and getting thrown out at second. Shit, I don't know. I wasn't an English major, okay?