Nationals Arm Race

"… the reason you win or lose is darn near always the same – pitching.” — Earl Weaver

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1000th Post at NationalsArmRace


Happy 1000th post!

With this post, if I trust my WordPress engine to tell me the right number of published articles, we have hit 1000 posts in the history of this blog.

Here’s some useless information for you about the first 1000 posts:

Posts by year:

  • 2010: (starting in June): 2+11+30+8+6+13+12 = 82 for the year
  • 2011: 2+20+25+23+23+20+17+13+26+18+21+19 = 227 for the year
  • 2012: 13+7+10+8+5+7+4+5+15+21+20+17 = 132 for the year
  • 2013: 21+15+22+22+20+26+18+20+13+31+10+19 = 237 for the year
  • 2014: 10+10+9+14+13+14+12+4+8+16+12+8 = 130 for the year
  • 2015: 8+5+9+13+11+12+8+7+4+15+13+10=115 for the year
  • 2016: 8+8+8+9+6+11+7+4+9+7=77 for 2016, including this post.  We may hit 100 in the next 3 months with all the off-season stuff we generally do.

I really got into the blog in 2011, and the post count was way up for rotation reviews of both major and minor leagues.  A new job curtailed my time immensely in mid 2012, though by the end of the season I had geared back up.  I was pretty regular with a post about 2 of every 3 days in 2013, with a whole slew of short posts in October 2013 to preview pitching match-ups for playoff games.  2014 scaled off a bit… a trend continuing into 2015 and 2016.

Milestone Posts

Random Blog milestones

  • 17th post: 8/9/10 “2011 Rotation Competition” First post where I started the formatting theme of bolding a proper name the first time it appears in a post.  I started this to highlight those players who I was specifically talking about.
  • 55th post: 10/20/10: “Contract Value for FA Starting Pitchers: The Cliff Lee Lesson to-be” First post where I started incorporating pictures into the blog posts.  I got the idea from Mark Zuckerman‘s blog, where he always uses a single picture at the top of each blog post.  Initially I used to find the images and then attempt to give proper photo credit.  Coincidentally, at some point in the past I did a ton of research on the use of photos on the internet and had a discussion on the subject (in the comments section of this May 2011 post).  Now I generally use pictures from wiki and/or flickr where the author has granted free use.
  • 221st post:  8/25/11, “My Answers to Boswell’s Chat Questions 8/22/11 edition.”  This was the earliest post that I regularly started using “tags” for player names.  I started doing this after turning on the “tag cloud” along the right hand side.  The tags also serve as a nice searching method for a particular player.  (I’ve since gone through some effort to “tag” the posts prior to this one but am not entirely caught up to the history of the blog).
  • 243rd post: 9/25/11, “New Theme!”  I changed the look and feel of the blog from an out-of-the-box WordPress theme to a custom theme.  I was doing this primarily to figure out a way to get the blog slogan (the Earl Weaver quote at the top) to be more visible.
  • 1/12/12: Posted a missive about “What are non-MLB associated baseball league talent equivalents?” which suddenly got picked up by a major media outlet and I started getting hits from all over the place.  I still go back and update this post to this day.
  • 6/13/12: My first post covering the College World Series: College World Series Preview/Regionals Recap.  I now cover the College season at least starting with the field of 64 and sometimes (time allowing) with previews of local college teams.
  • 3/28/13: My first post covering local prep players: Local HS players to keep an eye on this Spring.  I now try to cover any halfway decent player anywhere in DC, MD or VA in its entirety.
  • 5/23/13: My first post covering the local High school tournaments: Local Prep Baseball: Oakton & Madison win District titles; Regional tourney set.  I now cover all the local high school baseball tournaments in a series of posts throughout May and June.
  • 6/11/13: The first post really covering college draftees with local ties, to go along with the local prep players.  MLB Draft Results for Players with Local Ties.  Now in 2016, i’ve got a running history of both prep and college players and can track those prep players who went to school in 2013 who are now draft eligible, so future posts are that much easier to write.
  • Oct 2015: a series of posts reviewing the 2015 Season Statistical Review of all Nats 2015 draft picks and going back to the 2011 class.  I like this series and look forward to doing it again this year.

I guess I havn’t really done too many new features lately.

Count of posts by category: (note that these will add up to greater than 1000 since some posts get multiple categories):

  • 30 for 30: 9 posts, mostly older.  I used to try to review ESPN’s “30 for 30” shows when they aired but lost track.  I still have several in draft form but they’re several years old and not worth posting at this point.
  • Awards: 22 posts.  These are generally predictions for BBWAA awards and some in-depth analysis of fielding awards that I try to do every year.
  • Baseball in General: 218 posts; these are usually the tag that I give to non-Nats, non-other issue.
  • Chat/Mailbag Responses: 100: I really like doing this and keep forgetting that Tom Boswell does monday chats.  They’re generally arguable questions about the kinds of things we’re always talking about anyways; moves, trades, what should we do with so-and-so, etc.
  • College/CWS: 32 posts; just a few each year covering the big CWS tournament.
  • Draft: 76 posts, surprised its not more.
  • Fantasy: 12 posts, which works out to almost exactly two a  year (one when I draft the team, one where I tell you how badly I did).
  • Hall of Fame: 37 posts, which are mostly older because I have gotten quite sick of arguing about Hall of Fame voting.
  • Local Baseball: 54 posts, mostly about High School tourney coverage, local draft candidates and even some Little League and local adult area baseball thrown in.
  • Majors Pitching: 317 posts; lots of discussion about the state of the pitching.
  • Minor League Pitching: 133 posts.
  • Minor League Rotation Reviews: 29 posts; used to be more frequent, now just an annual check-in.
  • Nats in General: 356 posts, the most frequently used tag.
  • Nats rotation Reviews: 30 posts; as with the Minor League rotation reviews, these were sacrificed to the gods of time.
  • Non-Baseball; just 33 posts, and only one since Nov 2014.  I guess I’m very focused on baseball here :-)
  • Post-Season: 54 posts about, well, post-season.  Predictions, reviews of Nats games, etc.
  • Rule-5: 30 posts, since we talk about it over and over every year.  Ironically some pundits like Keith Law th ink the rule-5 draft is useless since such marginal prospects now reside at the ends of most 40-man roster teams, but I still think they’re useful precisely because those edge cases are so compelling to discuss.
  • Weekly News: 22 posts, an older feature where I used to cut and paste cool links I had read on a week to week basis.  That’s crazy to think about now; i just scan through everything these days.
  • World Baseball Classic: just 12 posts; but with another one coming up soon, we’ll revisit.  I cannot wait to see Cuba’s team this year.

Top 10 player names mentioned (since I started typing them in as Tags; this is definitely weighted more towards the the past season than earlier, as catching up hundreds of posts with updated tags is not an effort worth finishing frankly)

  1. Stephen Strasburg: 248 mentions; lost of angst about him over the years.
  2. Jordan Zimmermann: 193
  3. Mike Rizzo: 185
  4. Bryce Harper: 184
  5. Ross Detwiler: 167; really?  How is it that he’s the 5th most mentioned player in this blog??
  6. Gio Gonzalez: 163
  7. Danny Espinosa: 139
  8. Ryan Zimmerman: 138
  9. Drew Storen: 138
  10. Jayson Werth: 131

Items I wish I still had time to do:

  • The rotational reviews, especially in the minor leagues.  I maintained these for the first half of 2011, but a vacation in July of 2011 left me a couple weeks behind and I just never could catch up.  I didn’t even attempt to try these for 2012 or going forward.  Its unfortunate; the whole reason I started this blog was to study and be up on the minor league pitching, especially the starters.  I feel, and still feel, that developing quality starting pitching is the most important aspect of the farm system, and that a successful pre-arbitration pitcher is the most valuable commodity in the sport.
  • Nightly Reviews of MLB pitching performances; this requires the time to sit down each night and watch the games … I love baseball, but I just cannot commit that kind of time, especially with a young kid and a busy job.
  • Actually going to eyeball these players in the minor leagues and not just rely on stat lines.  Again, time and life priorities.
  • Honestly, I think I could do a better job “advertising” this blog.  Should I be pushing the

#1 item I wish I could incorporate: I’d love to do interviews of pitching coaches and pitchers at the various levels to talk about pitching strategy, mechanics and whatnot.  I briefly pursued getting a Nats press pass but got the impression that the team is less inclined to hand out press passes to blogs such as mine (which provide a heavy amount of opinion and commentary) versus blogs like Federal Baseball and DC Pro Sports Report (which act more like beat reporters and focus on doing pre-game and post-game reports).  Fair enough.

#1 technical issue I would like to change: I installed hit counters to try to gauge readership, but I still cannot reliably answer the question, “how many people read your blog?”  I have a plug-in installed to the WordPress engine called “Counterize” that gives me some sense of hits, but there’s so much garbage/hacker trolling going on that I cannot tell how many legitimate readers I have.


Post #1001 is coming soon after this one: i’m uncharacteristically going to do three posts in quick succession because I want to get the LCS preview/prediction post out before the LCS actually starts.  :-)  Lets you guys think I’m making predictions after the series starts…

Fantasy Baseball 2016 Post-Mortem

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Altuve was a huge driving factor for me in Fantasy this year ... but it wasn't enough to win the championship. Photo via

Altuve was a huge driving factor for me in Fantasy this year … but it wasn’t enough to win the championship. Photo via

Usual caveats apply; if you don’t care about Fantasy Baseball, you probably won’t care about this post.  I’ll return to Nats next week and am hoping to return to my detailed per-level pitching reviews this year….

Fantasy Baseball has wrapped up for the year; most leagues are doing their playoff finals this week.  This is my post-mortem for the year.  Here was my 2016 team preview article at the beginning of the year to show my drafted team.

My strategy for this year (pulled from the preview article):

  • focus on hitting; don’t load up on OF early.
  • wait on pitching.  With the conversion to QS, I felt like there was a ton of value later on with starters instead of burning early spots.
  • I wanted four closers (and got them … though the last one is really iffy).
  • I only wanted the minimum hitters, figuring I could start churning and burning based on the lower-end starters that weren’t working out.
  • I wanted a good mix of solid dependable players with a couple of high-end rookies (advice I liked after hearing it on a podcast)
  • Lastly I didn’t want to spend early on either C or 1B; catcher since there’s just so much turnover, 1B since there’s so much value later in the draft.

Results: My strategy worked out pretty well.  I had very good hitters, I got quality starters late and off waivers, I kept 3-4 closers all year, and I finished the regular season in 1st place by 3 games.  I was able (as always) to find quality OF and 1B on the waiver wire (in my case, Will Myers who exploded).  My one strategy miss may have been waiting on a Catcher; my catcher was awful all year and there was no  help on the waiver wire until later (see below for who I picked up).

Even despite finishing in 1st place regular season, my pitchers badly declined later in the year, I had an off-week offensively in the playoffs and I got bounced by the 5th place team in the semis.  And when I say bounced, I mean I lost 2-8 on the week.  So, a disappointing finish.  But i think the strategy was sound and I’ll do it again next year.

Here’s how I ended up in team stats for the season:

  • Runs; 3rd
  • HRs: 1st
  • RBIs: 4th
  • SBs: 9th
  • OBP: 2nd
  • Saves: 1st
  • Ks: 3rd
  • ERA: 5th
  • Whip: 3rd
  • QS: 3rd

Yeah; too bad we’re not playing Rotisserie.  The only category i was guaranteed to lose nearly every week was Steals.  Overall I had a pretty good year.

Here’s my initial draft and the player disposition on the year.

I drafted 9th out of 10 spots.  Here is my team (the two numbers are Round and # overall).

  1. 9    Nolan Arenado, Col 3B: Kept all year and finished #6 in Yahoo.
  2. 12    Jose Altuve, Hou 2B: Kept all year and finished #11 in Yahoo; he was much higher but has really struggled this last month, hurting his September value.
  3. 29    George Springer, Hou OF; Kept all year and finished #29 in Yahoo, almost exactly in line with his ADP and his rank.  Also struggled badly in september.
  4. 32    J.D. Martinez, Det OF: Missed 6 weeks mid-season so I dropped him, but picked him back up and he was not awesome but certainly not contributing as a 4th round pick.
  5. 49    Miguel Sano, Min DH; was decent early, then fell off a cliff and eventually missed time.  He ended up on the Waiver wire.
  6. 52    Carlos Carrasco, Cle SP: kept him all year even though he hit the D/L at some point and was awful in September.  I lost K’s by 9 in the playoffs … and got nothing from him thanks to the ill-timed line drive through the box.
  7. 69    Corey Seager, LAD SS: Kept all year; finished #67 in Yahoo.  A very shrewd pickup here.
  8. 72    Jeurys Familia, NYM RP: Kept all year, finished #71 in Yahoo.  Very solid Closer.
  9. 89    Cody Allen, Cle RP: I dropped him when the Indians acquired Andrew Miller … then missed out when Allen turned out to be mostly the closer again.  So
  10. 92    Danny Salazar, Cle SP: Another cleveland SP who spent time on the D/L but who was good when active; I dropped him during the playoffs when he strained his forearm.
  11. 109    David Peralta, Ari OF: My first real draft miss; he was ok for the first 6 weeks, then hit the D/L for a bit, then kept getting injured and didn’t play after early August.
  12. 112    Carlos Martinez, StL SP: My biggest “impatient drop” of the year; he struggled all the way through May and I dumped him; he got picked up by (ironically) the guy who beat me in the playoffs and he was stellar the rest of the way.
  13. 129    Adam Eaton, CWS OF: I dumped him at some point and he was basically on waivers the whole year; never good enough to pick up versus whoever had the hot hand.
  14. 132    Salvador Perez, KC C: Ugh; depth at Fantasy C is so thin, I stuck with him for almost the entire year.  Luckily I got to Gary Sanchez before anyone else, and rode him through the playoffs.
  15. 149    Jeff Samardzija, SF SP: Had him for a bit, thinking he’d be good in SF.  He was so streaky up and down that I dumped him.  He eventually got picked up by a competitor but was never really *that* good.
  16. 152    Justin Verlander, Det SP: My other big “impatient drop.”  I had Verlander two years ago and thought i’d get a find; he had a 6.49 ERA through his first 6 games.  I dumped him … and he finished the year Yahoo ranked #20.  Ugh.
  17. 169    Fernando Rodney, SD RP: A huge closer steal for yours truly; he was lights out right up until he got traded to be a setup guy.  That was a bummer.
  18. 172    Lucas Duda, NYM 1B: My perennail late-round 1B pickup, only this year he got hurt and was never really a fantasy player.
  19. 189    Lance McCullers, Hou SP: this late-round flier was on my D/L for weeks until it became apparent he wasn’t going to shwo up any time soon; he made just 2 starts all year.
  20. 192    Yordano Ventura, KC SP: awful all year; yahoo ranked #732.
  21. 209    J.J. Hoover, Cin RP: a flier on a closer-by-committee was the first player I dropped.  Luckily I caught on with some lower-end closers and did very well.  I got Luke Gregerson in Houston, who did well for a time.

So, just 8 of 21 players on my team all year from the draft.  And not one player drafted after the 10th round made it all the way though.  I’m not sure if that’s an indictment of my drafting, or just the nature of fantasy baseball.

Here was my team (save for playoff transactions) at the end of the year:

  • C: Gary Sanchez: What a monster; #11 for the month of September.
  • 1B: Wil Myers: another waiver-wire monster: He ended up yahoo ranked #30 on the year and I had  him for most of it.
  • 2B, SS, 3B: Altuve, Seager, Arenado: never once varied all year.
  • OF: Martinez, Springer and I had Keon Broxton at the end, trying to get Steals.  I played the waiver wire heavily for OFers, cycling through the likes of Justin Upton, Joc Peterson, Rajai Davis, Kendrys Morales, and for a long time Marcelle Ozuna.  In fact, for weeks I rolled out Martinez, Springer and Ozuna and had an extra random 1B (like Duda, or Napoli, or Travis Shaw) type filling in at utility.
  • Starting Pitchers: Anchors were Salazar and Carrasco.  All my other SPs were waiver pickups.  Teheran, Sanchez and Fulmer did the best for me, also had Smyly, Odorizzi at the end.  I cycled through a few SPs that in retrospect I wish I had kept versus what I ran out during the playoffs: Maeda, Gray, Bauer, Straily, etc.
  • Closers: Familia was the leader, also had Thornberg, Watson and Johnson at the end.  Really worked waivers to get closer replacements when my original guys were traded/got layered/lost out.  Allen and Rodney were really strong for me the first half, and then I just was quick on the trigger to grab Thornberg and Watson when their closers were traded.

So, how do we improve for next year?  My downfall was depending on waiver wire starters who faltered late.  I definitely had too many rookies (Sanchez and Fulmer in particular) leading the line.

I need to be patient with starters of course, but that’s the same thing every year.

I need to focus on getting a SB threat in the draft.

I need better luck.  Or to go rotisserie.  Or to get some transactions during the playoffs (which became a huge issue in our league, especially as I lost 3 different guys to injury during the playoffs).


A couple of quick pictures from the 9/11/16 pre-game ceremony


I think this is just the 2nd or 3rd game at the park for me this year … and we picked a great day and a great game.  We got there early and caught the pre-game ceremony.  Here’s a couple of pictures from the day.

Pre-game Ceremony at Nats Park 9/11/16. Photo Todd Boss

Pre-game Ceremony at Nats Park 9/11/16. Photo Todd Boss


Here’s a view using IPhone’s panoramic view.

Panorama of 9/11/16 pre-game.  Photo Todd Boss

Panorama of 9/11/16 pre-game. Photo Todd Boss


No other analysis/comment here; just wanted to put these two cool pictures up.  I wasn’t fast enough to get the fly-over.

Written by Todd Boss

September 12th, 2016 at 12:38 pm

Posted in Nats in General

Tagged with

DC/MD/VA High School Baseball Champions Tournament concept


(Nats fans: a first half review coming this week; wanted to get this published before it got too “old”).

Now that all the seasons for all the DC/MD/VA area teams are completed, I have a fun idea.  What if we could do a “Champions” tournament of the various schools who won titles?

I first started thinking about this tournament when Virginia split from AAA/AA/A to the six divisions and the reigning AAA state champion at the time (Hanover) was dumped down to 4-A.  The idea was sort of “Indiana Basketball” ish in nature: what would a tourney of all the six Virginia state champs look like?  Then that morphed to all the various scenarios below.

I know these kind of event would never happen (rules on number of games, kids graduating, etc); but it’s a fun thought exercise for those of us who follow HS baseball in the area.

Here’s a few interesting ideas for post-season tournaments.  Using my final 2016 post-season wrap-up as reference for all the tourney champs, here’s some ideas.

Tourney Idea #1: The Virginia Public Champions league tourney

This is my original concept.  Using the Six Virginia public school champions, you could play a mini weekend tournament with two brackets:

Bracket 1:
6A: Chantilly
3A: Rustburg
2A: Maggie Walker

Bracket 2:
5A: Nansemond River
4A: Hanover
1A: Rappahannock

Play a double header round robin on Saturday intra-bracket, then the bracket winners play Sunday.  It’d be a nice little way to determine who is the “Best of the Best” among the divisional champs.  I sense that there’s not a ton of difference between the 6-A, 5-A and 4-A champs but sense there’s a bit of a gap from 4-A to the 3-A/2-A/1-A teams.  It has been suggested to me to spread this tourney across a week or two weekends so as not to completely dilute the pitching and that’s a good point; none of these teams likely could play and be competitive in a three games-in-two-days situation, so perhaps a DH one weekend and a final the next would give the best pitching match-ups.

Theoretical Tournament Predictions: Hanover beats out a tough Nansemond River to advance and beats Chantilly in the final.

Tourney Idea #2: The All-Virginia champions league

This adds in the three state-wide private school champs.  Using 2016’s champions from both the public leagues and the three private leagues, your qualifiers are:

6A: Chantilly (Northern Virginia)
5A: Nansemond River (Suffolk)
4A: Hanover (Mechanicsville/Richmond)
3A: Rustburg (Lynchburg)
2A: Maggie Walker (Richmond)
1A: Rappahannock (King George County)

VISSA Division I: Collegiate (Richmond)
VISSA Division II: Greenbrier Christian (Chesapeake)
VISSA Division III: Southampton Academy (Franklin)

What if you seeded this 1-9 based on classifications and played a single elimination tourney?  You’d have the two smallest schools (1-A and VISAA division III) in a play-in and then seed the rest roughly by their size.

8/9 play-in: Rappahannock versus Southampton

1 vs 8/9: Chantilly vs Rappahannock/Southampton Academy
2 vs 7: Nansemond River vs Maggie Walker
3 vs 6: Collegiate versus Rustburg
4 vs 5:  Hanover versus Greenbrier Christian

Most of these teams are Central or Southern Virginia and are proximate to Richmond.  A tournament there would be best for all travelers.

Theoretical Tournament Predictions: Seeds hold in the quarter finals, though Hanover struggles to beat Greenbrier.   Hanover beats Chantilly in one semi, Nansemond River in the other, and Hanover wins the title.

Tourney Idea #3: The DC/MD/VA showdown; an 8-team competition of local champions.

Here we’d take the champions of the “local” divisions in the Washington DC metropolitan area:

– Virginia 6-A North champ: Chantilly
– Virginia 5-A North champ: Mountain View
– WCAC champ; St. Johns
– DCIAA champ: Wilson
– DCSAA champ: St. Albans
– IAC champ: Landon
– Maryland 4A West champ: Quince Orchard
– Maryland 3A West champ: Damascus

Seed this 1-8 and do a small tourney.  I’d probably seed it Virginia 6-A, Maryland 4A, Virginia 5A, WCAC, Maryland 3A, DCSAA, DCIAA and IAC.  So the bracket would be:

  • 1-8: Chantilly v Landon
  • 2-7: Quince Orchard v Wilson
  • 3-6: Mountain View v St. Albans
  • 4-5: St. Johns vs Damascus

The only problem here is that you leave out some of the smaller private school leagues and the independent powerhouse Riverdale Baptist.


Theoretical Tournament Predictions: I think seeds would pretty much hold and Chantilly beats Quince Orchard in the final.

Tourney Idea #4. The Maryland-Virginia Public School Show Down

Virginia Public champs
6A: Chantilly (Northern Virginia)
5A: Nansemond River (Suffolk)
4A: Hanover (Mechanicsville/Richmond)
3A: Rustburg (Lynchburg)
2A: Maggie Walker (Richmond)
1A: Rappahannock (King George County)

Maryland Public Champs:
4-A: Bel Air (North of Baltimore)
3-A: Huntingtown (Soloman’s Island)
2-A: La Plata (SE of Waldorf)
1-A: Brunswick (Frederick County)

Maybe you seed it 1-10 and have play-ins with the smallest teams.  Nearly every first round match-up ends up being MD vs VA team.

8-9: Maggie Walker vs Brunswick
7-10: Rustburg vs Rappahannock

1 Chantilly vs Maggie Walker/Brunswick winner
2 Bel Air vs Rustburg/Rappahannock winner
3 Nansemond River vs La Plata
4 Huntington vs Hanover

Theoretical Tournament Predictions: despite being the 5th seed here, Hanover upsets  Huntington and Chantilly to get to the final, where it meets Bel Air (a close winner over Nansemond River).  Hanover prevails.

Tourney Idea #5. The All Private School showdowns

VISSA Division I: Collegiate (Richmond)
VISSA Division II: Greenbrier Christian (Chesapeake)
VISSA Division III: Southampton Academy (Franklin)

MIAA Class A: Spalding (Severna Park, south of Baltimore)
MIAA Class B: Boys Latin (North Baltimore)
MIAA Class C: St. John’s Catholic Prep (Frederick)

WCAC: St. Johns (Northwest DC)
IAC: Landon (Bethesda)

Maryland Private Schools: Riverdale Baptist (Upper Marlboro)
DCSAA: St. Albans (Northwest DC)
MAC: Potomac School (McLean)
PVAC: Sandy Spring (Olney)

I’d probably seed this: Spalding, Collegiate, Riverdale Baptist, Greenbrier Christian, St. Johns DC, St. Albans, Boy’s Latin, and Landon.  Then the four smallest schools (Southampton Academy, St. Johns Catholic, Potomac School and Sandy Spring) could be play-in games to the top seeds.  So your bracket could be:

  • 5-12: St. Johns DC vs Sandy Spring
  • 6-11: St. Albans vs Potomac School
  • 7-10: Boy’s Latin vs St. Johns Catholic
  • 8-9: Landon vs Southampton
  • 1-8/9: Spalding vs Landon/Southampton
  • 2-7/10: Collegiate vs boy’s Latin/St. Johns Catholic
  • 3-6: Riverdale Baptist vs St. Albans/Potomac
  • 4-5: Greenbrier Christian vs St. Johns DC/Sandy Spring

That’s a fun little tourney, especially if seeds hold and you have the four elite MD/VA private schools meeting.  Its notable that the Prep Baseball Report thinks that Greenbrier Christian is the best school in the state of Virginia, irrespective of its size.  So perhaps seeding it 4th in this tournament isn’t fair.  My seedings are mostly driven by the “size” of the divisions these schools play in.

Theoretical Tournament Predictions: Seeds hold in the quarters, Greenbrier beats Spalding in one semi while Riverdale Baptist wins the other, and Greenbrier takes Riverdale in the final.

What do you think?  Would you like to see any of these fantasy tournaments?  Do you think my “theoretical predictions” are off?  I realize this post doesn’t really appeal to many of our Nats-interested readers, but it was a fun thought exercise for me :-)


Written by Todd Boss

July 11th, 2016 at 8:18 am

Posted in Local Baseball

Tagged with

Pre-2016 Draft coverage; mocks and local players


Kansas prep star Riley Pint may not go #1 overall, but he'll be close. Photo via

Kansas prep star (and subject of Jeff Passan’s latest book “The Arm”) Riley Pint may not go #1 overall, but he’ll be close. Photo via

The MLB rule-4 (Amateur) draft starts tonight, 6/9/16 at 7pm.  The MLB Network will have full coverage of the first round of picks. This post is my dumping ground of draft coverage for 2016.

This post uses last year’s format, with links to use to see draft prospect rankings, links to help cover the draft (which I personally come back to time and time again), some blurbs on local players of interest, and then links to a bunch of mock drafts.

Draft Coverage so far at NAR for 2016:

  • Here’s the big post on all marquee DC/MD/VA prep players ahead of the 2016 season (only guys who are “significant” draft prospects are mentioned here).
  • Here’s the same for DC/MD/VA tied College players
  • After the draft happens, I’ll review both of the above posts and list who actually got picked and who’s going to school.

Draft Links of importance

Here’s a slew of Draft Prospect rankings : these are NOT the same as mock drafts; see further down for those.  You’re going to see the same locally tied names on nearly all of these lists; they’re all individually profiled further below.


Now, some news about College Players with local ties who are serious draft candidates (meaning first couple of rounds projected or present on top 100 draft ranking lists).  Note that I’ve got a far, far larger list of local players that I’ll follow-up on after the draft; these are just the significant/top 10 round types.

  • Connor Jones, UVA RHP via Great Bridge; at this point perhaps the 2nd or 3rd best college pitching prospect thanks to fall-offs from a number of other candidates.  Probably a mid-1st rounder, though some pundits (Keith Law) have him rated far lower.
  • Buddy Reed, OF from Florida via Finksburg, MD (NW of Baltimore).  Probably a late first rounder or sandwich pick, perhaps lower.
  • Matt Thaiss, UVA C who has shot up the rankings; now projected as early 2nd rounder.  Keith Law likes him as a late 1st rounder.
  • Mike Shawaryn: RHP for Maryland; stock has really fallen this season; now perhaps just a 4th rounder.  A late season push improved his draft status somewhat.
  • Andrew Knizner, C from NC State by way of Glen Allen, VA: gritty ballplayer who has played his way into perhaps 5th round discussions.
  • Errol Robinson, SS from Ole Miss by way of Maryland; struggled badly this season, dropping his stock from early 2nd round projections; no idea where he’s project to go now.

Local Prep players of note who are serious draft candidates:

  • Joe Rizzo, INF for Oakton HS.  Remains the highest ranked local draft prospect, projecting as anywhere between a mid-1st rounder and an early 2nd rounder.  South Carolina commit.’s write-up profiles his draft prospects the best.
  • Khalil Lee LHP/OF for Flint Hill.  Some have him 2nd-3rd round, others have him projected 4th-5th.  Part of the confusion is where to play him; he was an undersized speedy CF candidate… then suddenly flashed low 90s off the mound as a lefty starter this year.  Liberty commit.
  • Zack Hess, 1B/OF from Liberty Christian Academy (Lynchburg).  3rd round projection.  LSU commit.
  • Noah Murdock, a RHP from Colonial Heights (Richmond).  4th round projection by rank, UVA commit.
  • Garrett Stallings, RHP from Grassfield HS.  Not generally listed but may be rising, Tennessee commit.

Re-draft players of interest to Nats fans:  these are re-drafts that have come back up.  See the Draft Tracker for underclassmen draftees from last year and/or Prep draftees from 2013 who are now draft eligible again.

  • Garrett Hampson, SS from Long Beach State.  Nats 2013 26th round pick, now projecting as a 5th or 6th rounder.
  • Reid Humphreys, RHP/OF two-way player from Mississippi State.  Nats 2013 36th rounder, now projecting as a 4th/5th rounder.
  • Shaun Anderson, RHP from Florida.  Nats 2013 40th rounder, now projecting as a late 3rd rounder.
  • John Reeves, C from Rice.  Nats 2015 20th rounder who started 56 games for the CWS-bound Rice team and hit above .300; looks like a good choice to return to school.
  • Alec Rash, RHP from Missouri: Nats 23rd round pick in 2015.  Quit baseball altogether last fall to pursue collegiate basketball.
  • Blake Smith, RHP from WVA: Nats 24th round pick in 2015: posted a 2.20 ERA as West Virginia’s closer for the season with 8 saves and 25 appearances.
  • Mack Lemieux, LHP from Jupiter HS and then Palm Beach State CC.  Nats 14th round pick in 2015.


Mock Drafts

Every year I say i’ll stay away from the Mock Draft links … and every year I come back.  Here’s a running collection. has a master list of Mock drafts at this link that has many more than I’ve got listed below.

  • Fangraphs/Scott Moore‘s Mock #1: Groome, Senzel, Lewis, Puk, Pint.
  • BaseballAmerica/Hudson Belinsky‘s Mock #1: Groome, Senzel, Pint, Puk, Perez.
  • BaseballAmerica/Hudson Belinsky‘s Mock #2: Puk, Lewis, Pint, Moniak, Ray.
  • BaseballAmerica/John Manuel Mock #1: Puk, Lewis, Pint, Moniak, Groome.
  • BaseballAmerica/John Manual BA Mock #4: Moniak, Puk, Ray, Lewis, Pint
  • Manual Mock #5: Moniak, Puk, Lewis, Pint, Ray
  • ESPN/Keith Law Mock #1 (Insider only): Puk, Lewis, Groome, Pint, Ray.
  • ESPN/Keith Law Mock #2 (Insider only): Puk, Lewis, Groome, Moniak, Perez.
  • ESPN/Keith Law Mock #3: Puk, Lewis, Groome, Pint, Ray
  • ESPN/Keith Law Final Mock: Moniak, Puk, Lewis, Pint, Ray
  • Piliere Mock #1: Puk, Lewis, Groome, Pint, Ray.
  • Piliere Mock #2: Puk, Lewis, Ray, Groome, Perez
  • Callis Mock #1: Puk, Senzel, Lewis, Moniak, Ray.
  • Callis  Mock #2: Puk, Senzel, Lewis, Moniak, Perez.
  • Callis Final Mock: Moniak, Senzel, Ray, Puk, Collins
  • Mayo Mock #1: Puk, Senzel, Lewis, Groome, Perez.
  • Mayo Final Mock: Moniak, Senzel, Ray, Puk, Rutherford
  • MinorLeagueBall Mock #1 Part one and Part two: Lewis, Puk, Groome, Rutherford, Moniak
  • Ward Mock #1: Groome, Senzel, Rutherford, Lewis, Ray
  • Ward Mock #2: Puk, Ray, Lewis, Groome, Rutherford.
  • EllisMock #1: Groome, Hansen, Puk, Moniak, Pint
  • EllisMock #2: Senzel, Perez, Ray, Groome, Rutherford
  • EllisMock #3: Garrett, Groome, Rutherford, Senzel, Perez
  • EllisMock #4: Puk, Perez, Ray, Moniak, Rutherford
  • EllisMock #5: Puk, Lewis, Pint, Moniak, Rutherford
  • Ellis final Mock: Moniak, Puk, Lewis, Pint, Ray
  • Sullivan‘s Mock #1: Puck, Senzel, Lewis, Groome, Perez
  • Crawford‘s Last minute Mock Draft: Puk. Lewis, Groome, Pint, Ray
  • Baseball Prospectus; have not seen any mock drafts from BP this year.
  • Mock Drafts are Insider/Premium only; this link is to their 2016 Draft Coverage home page.


Todd Boss’ Mock draft?  Based on my vast level of expertise (sarcasm) and the thousands of man hours i’ve put in scouting players in person and cultivating industry sources (also sarcasm), and instead reading the tea leaves of the gazillion other mock drafts, I’ll take this as my initial guess for the top 5: Puk, Lewis, Groome, Pint, Moniak

The only thing that gives me pause is this: Puk *stunk* in the regional.  4 and a third, 5 hits and 5 runs given up to UConn.  Sorry; if you’re going to go 1-1 you need to do an outing like 7ip, 4hits, 10ks, 0 walks in your swan song.  I wonder if that was enough to have Philly move to a different pick.  And Perez just got popped for failing a drug test, instantly removing him from top-5 consideration.  So, given Puk’s stinker most of the last minute mocks have Philly off of Puk and doing Moniak as an under-slot deal.  And I can’t disagree.  So my final mock will be: Moniak, Puk, Lewis, Pint, Ray

And this top 5 means that Groome and Pint (who I think are the two best talents in this draft) fall to teams outside the top 5 and they’re going to be absolutely ecstatic.

ACTUAL DRAFT Results: Moniak, Senzel, Anderson (??), Pint and Ray.  Just like everyone predicted.

Who are the Nats going to take at #28 and #29?

No frigging idea.  Lots of these Mock drafts attempt to guess, to put some names with the Nats down that far.  But consider the 2011 draft.  Everyone had Anthony Rendon going 1-1.  Suddenly he slips and the Nats grab him at #6 in a total gift.  The point is this: we have no idea how even the top 5 picks will go, so predicting what’s going to happen at pick #6 is folly, let alone #28.  Nats will take BPA, probably will mix up a safer pick (aka college arm) with a riskier pick (aka a high school bat) and go back to back $2M bonus slots.  I also like the running theory that the nats will get the Scott Boras special and “package” two Boras clients together at 28/29 and basically split the bonus pools.  Names often mentioned here include Kyle Funkhauser and the prep pitcher/basketball player Matt Manning.  One would be an over draft, one would be a steal if he gets here.  We’ll see.


CWS 2016: Field fo 64 announced with Regional predictions


Its that time of year again; Its College Baseball playoff season!

On 5/29/16, a day before the entire field was announced, the 16 Regional hosts were announced.  These are also the top 16 seeds (though they only acknowledge the top 8 “national seeds”).  The following day, the entire field was announced.  Here’s a look at the 16 regional tournaments with some quickie thoughts.

Each of these 4-team sets is listed in the “seed” in the regional, starting with the host:

1. Florida, Georgia Tech, UConn, Bethune-Cookman: hard to see the #1 overall seed and presumptive favorite all year lose at this stage.
16. Florida State, Southern Miss, South Alabama, Alabama State: Some think there’s an upset possible here, since both Southern Miss and South Alabama are tough; I still think Fla State can power its way through here.

If seeds hold, Florida meets Florida State for a fun intra-state tourney.  They’ve played three mid-week games this season with Florida sweeping them all, so odds are that Florida is making Omaha.

2. Louisville, Ohio State, Wright State, Western Michigan: Ohio State as your 2-seed isn’t scaring anyone.
15. Vanderbilt, UC Santa Barbara, Washington, Xavier: Not really much of a challenge for Vanderbilt in this regional; not even another top-25 team.

If seeds hold, yet another intra-state repeat super-regional matchup between these two teams, and a pretty tough draw for Louisville if it happens.  Vanderbilt is better than a #15 seed and this match-up seems like its forced to save a few dollars in travel costs; both of these teams are legitimate Omaha threats, with Vanderbilt having made the final in both of the last two seasons.

3. Miami, Florida Atlantic, Long Beach State, Stetson: Miami and Florida Atlantic split a couple of mid-week games; they have a dangerous Long Beach State as a #3 seed.  tough regional.
14. Ole Miss, Tulane, Boston College, Utah: Ole Miss will have its hands full with Tulane but should advance.

If seeds hold, Ole Miss gets a tough assignment going to Miami, but Miami should prevail.

4. Texas A&M, Minnesota, Wake Forest, Binghamton: wow, Minnesota as your #2 seed?  Tough regional you laid out there for TAMU this year.
13. TCU, Arizona State, Gonzaga, Orel Roberts: I don’t trust any of the Pac-12 teams this year; TCU should prevail.

If seeds hold, yet another manufactured super regional of local teams.  They didn’t play mid-week this season.  This could be a good series; some think TAMU is the beat team in the land.

5. Texas Tech, Dallas Baptist, New Mexico, Fairfield: shouldn’t be too tough for newcomer Texas Tech.
12. UVA, Bryant, ECU, William & Mary: well, UVA got kind of short changed here; Bryant isn’t tough but ECU can be.  They can’t be happy about seeing in-state rival W&M either.  They dodged a bullet with a weaker #2 seed though.

If seeds hold, Texas Tech-UVA is super close; they’re #6 and #7 in d1baseball’s latest poll.  I know nothing of Texas Tech but know UVA has played great as of late, has two 1st round talents and could be a tough out.

6. Mississippi State, Cal-State Fullerton, Louisiana Tech, Southeast Missouri State; Mississippi State should cruise here: Fullerton looks tough on paper but can come up short in the playoffs.
11. Louisiana-Lafayette, Arizona, Sam Houston State, Princeton: some upset potential here if you trust any Pac-12 teams.

If seeds hold, hard to see Mississippi State (ranked #3 in d1baseball’s latest poll) losing.

7. Clemson, Oklahoma State, Nebraska, Western Carolina: Clemson will be favored but will struggle with OK State.
10. South Carolina, UNC-Wilmington, Duke, Rhode Island; tough regional for South Carolina; Duke is no slouch and Wilmington is tough.

If seeds hold (and sensing a pattern here), another intra-state superregional.  Clemson-South Carolina would be fun.

8. LSU, Rice, Southeastern LA, Utah Valley: hard to see LSU getting stressed here: Rice always underperforms in the post-season.
9. NC State, Coastal Carolina, St. Marys, Navy: tough blow for Coastal, which apparently went from just missing being a regional host to having to travel to tough ACC competitor NC State.  Meanwhile, NC State probably has the hardest regional of them all, with Navy’s pre-season all-american Luke Gillingham set to go in game 1.

If seeds hold, LSU-NC State could be a barn burner.

Easiest Regionals: I’d go with TAMU, Florida, Louisville.

Hardest Regionals: NC State, South Carolina, UVA.

My Omaha predictions right now: Florida, Louisville, Miami, TAMU, UVA, Mississippi State, South Carolina, LSU.  A lot of chalk there.


North Carolina.  A top 20 team by RPI but yet again finishes with a sub-par, sub-.500 record in ACC play and gets left out.  10 other ACC teams made the tournament, making college baseball more and more of an ACC-SEC affair, but not having a top 20 team by the same RPI factors that clearly drove both the regional host selections and the at-large teams really is kind of hypocritical.  Why not just tell teams at the beginning of the year, “if you don’t finish .500 in conference play you will not be selected.”

The college podcasts listed a few other snubs like Kent State and PAC-12 teams Oregon and/or Oregon State, but for me it starts and ends with UNC.

Marquee Draft-related players to watch

I won’t go through all 64 teams, but here’s some of the more interesting names to keep an eye on:

  • #1 Florida has likely #1 overall pick A.J. Puk, but their “other” Ace starter Logan Shore is also a likely 1st or 2nd round pick.  Also a likely high pick is OF Buddy Reed.
  • #2 seed Louisville is led by likely top-5 pick Corey Ray and has two big arms you’ll hear mentioned on draft day (Zach Burdi and Kyle Funkhouser).
  • Miami’s Zach Collins is probably the first catcher off the board.
  • UVA is led by Conner Jones and Matt Thaiss, both likely 1st rounders.
  • Mississippi State’s ace is Dakota Hudson, likely the 2nd or 3rd college arm drafted.
  • Vanderbilt is led by 1st rounder Jordan Sheffield and in the field by likely 2nd rounder Bryan Reynolds.
  • Boston College’s staff is led by likely 1st rounder Justin Dunn.
  • Wake Forest’s Will Craig is one of the top sluggers in the nation, on the leader boards for both average and home runs.
  • UConn’s Anthony Kay will make life difficult for Florida if he is saved for the winner’s bracket game.

Other News

After Texas failed to make the tourney, their long-time coach and noted arm-shredder Augie Garrido stepped down to take an administrative job.

College CWS tournament references:


Prep Baseball Update #2 2016: Private, DC, Maryland State Champs, Northern VA District Champs crowned


This is post #2 of High School Tourney coverage for 2016.  Here’s the schedule:

  • #1: DC/MD/VA District High School Tournament Report: post-season kickoff.  Covers: MD regional kickoffs, VA district brackets, Private school tourney updates.  Usually publishes the week before Memorial day tournament finals.
  • #2: Maryland State Champs, Northern VA District Champs crowned (this post).  Covers: MD state finals, VA district tourneys, VA regional brackets, DC regular season results.  Usually publishes after the Memorial Day weekend tournaments finish up.
  • #3: Virginia Regional Results, DC Tourneys.  Covers: VA regional results, State brackets, DC tourney results.  Usually publishes the first week of June.
  • #4: Final Prep Baseball Update: Virginia State Champions crowned.  Covers: VA state tourneys, recaps MD, DC, Private School results.  Publishes mid-June once the Va state tourney wraps up.

Lets see where we stand now after the Memorial Day weekend and a slew of tournament results.

Text in Red are pending results, which we’ll pick up in the next post in this series.


Here are the Virginia Conference champions, regular season and tournament.  All these playoff brackets, if they exist, are at this link at VHSL.  I won’t re-link all the playoff brackets per district/region below.

6-A North Region

  • 6-A Conference 5/Concorde: Regular season champ Chantilly won two close games to also take the District title.  Centreville scored the minor #3 over #2 upset to take the 2nd seed from this district.
  • 6-A Conference 6/Liberty: Regular season champ Madison won a 1-0 squeaker over #2 seed McLean in the district final.
  • 6-A Conference 7/Potomac: Lake Braddock routed #1 seed West Springfield and #3 seed Annandale en route to the district title. 
  • 6-A Conference 8/Cedar Run: Regular season champ Battlefield won both its playoff games 2-1 to take the District title.

6-A North Regional Qualifiers (in seed order).  Here’s the 6-A North bracket.  Play begins 5/25/16.

  • Conference 5/Concorde: Chantilly, Centreville, Westfield, Robinson
  • Conference 6/Liberty: Madison, McLean, Washington & Lee, South Lakes.
  • Conference 7/Potomac: Lake Braddock, West Springfield, West Potomac
  • Conference 8/Cedar Run: Battlefield, Patriot, Osborne Park, Osbourne.

Quick predictions for 6-A North regional tourney: In an unlucky break for both teams, Madison and Battlefield are set to meet in the Regional semis on 5/31/16 by virtue of being on the same side of the draw.  Defending regional champ Chantilly has a tough 2nd round matchup with McLean, while the powerful Lake Braddock team has a seemingly easier path to the Regional semis.  Its hard not to predict all four #1 seeds from advancing at this point; we’re marking our calendars for a potentially great Madison-Battlefield matchup (presumably with their ace Jake Agnos going) on 5/31.

6-A North Regional Tournament Results: As of this posting: Only one small upset by seeding in the first round of the 6-A North playoffs (#3 seed Centreville over #2 seed Annandale); otherwise most of the teams played close, one- or two-run games.   In the 5/27/16 quarters, the recent dominance of the Liberty district was exposed as both Madison and McLean were defeated handily.  The Regional semis are now Battlefield vs Centreville (who blanked Madison 3-0) and Chantilly versus Patriot (who upset #1 seed Lake Braddock).  A good showing for the Cedar Run conference in 2016.

Semis on 5/31/16 and Finals (set for 6/3/16) pending.

6-A South Region: which is mostly big-time schools in Richmond, Roanoke and Virginia Beach area.  But there are just enough schools in Woodbridge proper to form a 6-A conference closer to DC with teams that are typically considered for All-Met rankings.   Unlike 6A-North, just the top two teams from each district make the Regional tournament.  Thus, the district tournaments here are lagging the district tournaments for the North region, which finished before theirs even began.

In an interesting configuration, the winners of 6A Conference 1 and 5A conference 9 will play a championship game, so on the VHSL site they’re in the same bracket.

Direct link to Tide-water area tourney schedules at Pilot Online.    Direct link to Richmond area tourney schedules at the Times-Dispatch.

  • 6-A Conference 1/Coastal: First Colonial and Kellam (two perennial power houses) are the top seeds, but the tourney is at host Kellam so we’ll see who wins out.  In the tourney though, Kellam was upset with First Colonial and #3 seed Ocean Lakes facing off.  There, Ocean Lakes upset perhaps the state’s best team in a 9-inning affair (but First Colonial is still the #1 seed).
  • 6-A Conference 2/Monitor Merrimac: As with last year, Western Branch and Grassfield are the top seeds and advanced to the title game, but Grassfield came out on top 6-1.
  • 6-A Conference 3: Manchester and Cosby 1/2 seeds.  In the regional final seeds held and Manchester took the District title 6-5.
  • 6-A Conference 4: Colonial Forge is the regular season champ.  Seeds hold in the district tourney with Colonial Forge beating Hylton in the tourney final 3-0.

6-A South Regional Qualifiers: Games set for 5/30-6/3.

  • 6-A Conference 1/Coastal: First Colonial, Ocean Lakes
  • 6-A Conference 2/Monitor Merrimac: Grassfield, Western Branch
  • 6-A Conference 3: Manchester, Cosby.
  • 6-A Conference 4: Colonial Forge, Hylton

Quick predictions for 6-A South regional tourney: to come in the next update once we know who has qualified.  Early thoughts are on Colonial Forge, First Colonial and the conference 2 powerhouses Western Branch and Grassfield.  Grassfield’s chances may depend on the timing of their Ace Grant Garrett Stallings and which game he throws.

5-A North Region:

  • 5-A Conference 13/Capitol: Regular season champ Marshall squeaked through the district tournament, winning the final over #3 seed Edison.
  • 5-A Conference 14: Regular Season champ (and defending State champ) Stone Bridge was upset in the District final by Briar Woods (though Briar Woods probably was the better team by overall record).  Tuscarora easily handled Broad Run to capture the final regional slot.
  • 5-A Conference 15: Regular Season champ Mountain View won two close games to capture the District title.
  • 5-A Conference 16: Regular Season champ Halifax beat 2nd place Atlee in the district title game, with #4 seed Orange capturing the 3rd regional spot.

5-A North Regional Qualifiers (in seed order): 5-A North regional bracket here.  Play begins on 5/24/16.  In a change from last year, the top 3 from each conference qualify for Regionals.

  • Conference 13/Capitol: Marshall, Edison, Lee
  • Conference 14: Briar Woods, Stone Bridge, Tuscarora
  • Conference 15: Mountain View, Potomac, Stafford
  • Conference 16: Halifax, Atlee, Orange

Quick predictions for 5-A North regional tourney: I sense that Marshall isn’t nearly as good as its inflated record and that Briar Woods is vulnerable.  We regularly have no idea how good or bad the Southwestern Conference 16 teams are, and this benefits Mountain View (who plays into Halifax if the seeds  hold).  I’ll predict a Mountain View-Marshall regional final with Mountain View prevailing.

5-A North Regional tournament Results: (5-A North Bracket Here) In the #2/#3 seed play-in battles, only Edison was exposed and lost easily to Tuscarora.  In the quarters, only Briar Woods was upset (by Potomac), setting up two intriguing regional semis matches on 6/1/16.   Semis and Finals (set for 6/3/16) pending.

5-A South Region

  • 5-A Conference 9/Atlantic: Hickory and Indian River are the top 2 seeds; see above for the weird Conference 1/9 bracket.  Hickory seems to have moved from Conference 10 to 9 for some reason this year; they’re a recent VA state champ and are one to look out for.  The top 2 seeds advanced to the title game, where Indian River prevailed.
  • 5-A Conference 10/PenSouth: Menchville/Nansemond River are the 1/2 seeds.
  • 5-A Conference 11: Mills Godwin and Deep Run are the 1/2 seeds, but #3 seed Glen Allen upset both of them en route to a district title, destroying Mills Godwin in the final 16-3.
  • 5-A Conference 12: Prince George and Matoaca are the 1/2 seeds, and seeds held form in the tourney with Prince George winning out.

5-A South Regional Qualifiers (in seed order): 5-A South Bracket here: I don’t like the bracket configuration, where the two teams from the same region have to meet before the final; if (say) Indian River and Hickory are the two best 5-A teams … they shouldn’t have to play until the finals.  Games set for 5/30-6/3.

  • Conference 9/Atlantic: Hickory, Indian River.
  • Conference 10/PenSouth: Menchville, Nansemond River
  • Conference 11: Glen Allen, Mills Godwin.
  • Conference 12: Prince George, Matoaca

Quick predictions for 5-A south regional tourney: I like Hickory and Glen Allen’s chances, but we’re a ways from knowing how the regional sets up.

Smaller Virginia Classifications with Northern Virginia ties.  The local teams in 3-A Conference 27 have all moved/graduated to 4-A, so we’ll just cover 3-A Conference 28.

4-A North:

  • 4-A Conference 21 East/A: Conference 21 split into east and west this year, presumably for travel purposes.  In the Conference tournament, seeds held to form and #1 seed Millbrook beat #2 seed Woodgrove in the final.  Both teams advance to regionals.
  • 4-A Conference 21 West/B: Loudoun Valley’s reign over the conference was ended with a shock district tourney upset at the hands of Heritage (just 8-14 on the year).  In the district final Loudoun County faced off with Heritage and defeated them for the district title and regional berth.
  • 4-A Conference 22: Local powerhouse Kettle Run (17-1 in the regular season) faced John Champe (Aldie) in the district final.  Both teams are moving up in the world, having both been in 3-A last  year.

4-A South

  • 4-A Conference 17 now has perennial power Great Bridge, dropped down due to size.  They’ll be a force to reckon with in the state tourney along with Richmond’s Hanover.  In the district tournament, Great Bridge and Wilson met in the final where Great Bridge prevailed.

3-A East Region

  • 3-A Conference 28: District Champ William Monroe and #2 seed Brentsville District.  In the District Final, Seends held to form with #1 William Monroe taking both the regular season and district tourney title.

2-A East Region

  • 2-A Conference 35: District Champ Strasburg, local team George Mason is #3 seed and faces a tough drive to Madison County in the district semis, where they got beat badly 14-1.  in the District Final, Madison County upset #1 Seed Strasburg in an all-hitting affair 18-11.


Here’s the state finals results in Maryland, played the week of 5/18/15.  Brackets here at the MPSAA website.

  • 4-A States: State Semis were 4-A East champs Leonardtown from St. Mary’s county (who beat Severna Park in a battle of the district #1 seeds), Quince Orchard (who beat favorite Gaithersburg in an all-Gaithersburg grudge match early and then outlasted surprise Bethesda-Chevy Chase in the 4-A West final), Bel Air (North of Baltimore) in 4-A North (outlasting Howard in an upset-filled tourney), and #1 Bowie (outside of Annapolis) outlasting Laurel in the 4-A south.  In the State Semis on 5/24/16, Quince Orchard took out Leonardtown 2-1 and Bel Air flattened Bowie 8-0.   In the State Final, Bel Air easily beat Quince Orchard 8-1 for the state title. 
  • 3-A States: State semis were 3-A East champ Chesapeake (Anne Arundel county), who defeated last year’s runner-up Mt. Hebron in the regional final, 3-A West champ Damascus, 3-A North Aberdeen and 3-A south Huntingtown (who beat Rockville in the regional final).  In the State Semis, Huntingtown defeated Aberdeen in extra innings while Chesapeake walked-off against Damascus in 8 innings.  In the state final on 5/30/16, Huntingtown rallied to overcome a 3-0 deficit in the 7th inning to win 4-3.
  • 2-A States: State semi finalists: Queen Anne’s, Williamsport, Eastern Tech and La Plata, who beat two time defending state champ Southern in the 2-A South regional final.  In the State Semis, La Plata destroyed Eastern Tech 18-1 and Williamsport took out Queen Anne’s.  In the state final, La Plata eased by Williamsport to take the title.
  • 1-A States: State semi finalists: St. Michaels, Brunswick, Patterson Mill (who defeated state finalist McDonough in their regional final) and Pikesville.  Brunswick keeps the repeat dreams alive while St. Michaels returns to try to claim a 3rd title in 6 years.  Brunswick and Patterson Mill advanced to the state final on 5/25/16.  In the state final, Brunswick repeated with a 4-0 victory.

A quick list of past Maryland State champions by division:

The Maryland public high school seasons are now complete.

DC Public Schools/DCIAA:

  • DCIAA: Wilson presumably kept its 20+ year winning streak in tact and took the regular season title in the District.  Rain delayed the playoffs, but per the bracket the Seeds held to the final with Wilson battling the School Without Walls (SWW). In that final, Wilson took its24th consecutive DCIAA title with an 11-1 win.  The gap in talent between even the best and 2nd best DCIAA team could be seen in the game report: all the Wilson seniors left after the 2nd inning so they could make the Prom … leaving all the underclassmen to win the game.
  • DCSAAThe DCSAA tournament started on 5/18/16 (Bracket Here), and Wilson once again has fallen short in winning the one title they’ve never won.  As the #2 seed they fell to #3 seeded St. Albans in the semis.  #4 seed Maret upset #1 seeded Gonzaga in the other semis, leaving a 5/27/16 final of Maret vs St. Albans.  There, St. Albans eased out a 2-1 victory to claim the DCSAA title.

Private Leagues: WCAC/MAC/IAC and VISAA/Maryland Private

Of note, Maryland baseball factory Riverdale Baptist has rolled of 30-straight victories and won the NACA national championship.

All Area private schools’ seasons are now complete.

Individual Player Accolades Announced

In addition to being playoff-baseball time, this is also the time of the year that we start to see player awards.

Gatorade announced their player of the year awards on 5/24/16:

  • Maryland: Spalding’s Tyler Blohm won the Maryland award.  Committed to Maryland.
  • Washington DC: St. John’s Cam Remalia (by way of Waldorf, MD) won the DC award.  Committed (per PG) to Coastal Carolina.
  • Virginia: Flint Hill’s Khalil Lee won the Virginia award.  Committed to Liberty but likely to get drafted early.

Pending Awards to be announced/expected later this spring:

  • Louisville Slugger All-Americans
  • Washington Post All-Met teams; have been named (seen some announcements on twitter), but have not been released.
  • The Baltimore Sun’s All-Metro Team
  • Richmond Times-Dispatch All-Richmond team (if exists)
  • Virginian Pilot All-tidewater team (if exists)
  • Virginia All 6-A North Regional team: Jake Agnos, LHP Battlefield is the Pitcher of the year, Jared DiCesare, Chantilly is the Player of the year.
  • Other Virginia All-Regional teams: pending
  • VHSL All-State Teams
  • VISAA’s All-State teams, Division I, II and III
  • Maryland MIAA All-State teams (if exists)


My master list of links used to cover HS Baseball:

Local and National High School Baseball Ranking Lists: Updated for 5/23/16 in most cases.

  • Washington Post All Met Sports Area top-10 ranking: Madison has maintained #1 ranking all year.
  • Rankings: Madison and Chantilly have dominated the rankings all year, Battlefield & Marshall there too.
  • PrepBaseballReport maintains a VA State-Wide Power25 Rankings: Greenbrier Christian, Hanover, Liberty Christian leading the way.
  • Baltimore Sun Top-10 Poll Archives: Perennial power Spalding has been at the top for a good chunk of the season.  Chesapeake, Severna Park.
  • The Virginian Pilot Top-10 for Hampton Roads area: Private school powerhouse Greenbrier Christian, Grassfield and one-loss First Colonial have led the way most of the year.
  • Richmond times-Dispatch Richmond-Area top-10: perennial 4-A power Hanover leads the way.
  • UsaToday’s National High School “Expert” Rankings 5/25/16: Hanover comes in at #16, Spalding at #21.
  • USAtoday’s National “Computer” Rankings 5/25/16: Just Hanover at #21.
  • Baseball America Top 25: No local teams ranked.  Madison was in the pre-season list but quickly dropped out with its early season tourney losses.
  • MaxPreps “Excellent 25” ranking: No local teams listed. Madison started #11
  • MaxPreps “Excellent 50” rankings: No local teams listed.
  • MaxPreps All-Virginia Rankings: Hanover, Grassfield 1-2, then 4-A Jamestown (maybe a bit high), then the two big private schools Greenbrier Christian and Liberty Christian.  Highest ranked 5-A team is Mountain View, so there’s your 6A/5A/4A favorites.

These National rankings are dominated by teams in Texas, Florida and California, as you might expect.  These teams can play nearly 40 games and usually have at least 15-20 under their belts before DC/MD/VA teams even get going.  So its somewhat of an accomplishment just to have a local team get some recognition.  In fact, any cold-weather state team appearing in these lists is pretty special.

Major Newspaper Links/Resources for following prep baseball around the state

  • Washington Post’s AllMetSports section with standings and schedule results.
  • The Baltimore Sun’s high school page has information on some of the programs outside the DC area mentioned in the Maryland section
  •‘s coverage of high school sports, but has put limits on the number of stories you can read.
  • Richmond Times-Dispatch has a HS scoreboard.
  • Hampton Roads Pilot (Hampton Roads) has scores for teams in the Chesapeake/Norfolk/Va Beach area.
  • NovaBaseballMagazine: great coverage of Prep baseball in NorthernVirginia (thanks to Joe Antonellis for the heads up on this great new resource).

Local Newspaper Coverage, including links to many local papers covering smaller jurisdictions.

Non-newspaper Links for Local and National Prep Baseball Coverage

Good Twitter accounts to follow:

  • I maintain an open list at my twitter account via this link, which contains direct links to dozens of local resources (including all the below).  Way too many retweets from the travel team accounts especially, but its a good way to keep up with local ball.
  • Prep Baseball Report VA/DC coverage
  • NoVa Baseball Magazine


Written by Todd Boss

May 31st, 2016 at 7:09 am

DC/MD/VA District High School Tournament Report: 2016 post-season underway


It has been a rainy spring season for local baseball teams, but the district tournament season is upon us.  Here’s the first of four posts we’ll do covering the High School baseball tournaments in the DC/MD/VA area.  Here’s the rough schedule of posting and what we’ll cover:

  • #1: DC/MD/VA District High School Tournament Report: post-season kickoff (this post).  Covers: MD regional kickoffs, VA district brackets, Private school tourney updates.  Usually publishes the week before Memorial day tournament finals.
  • #2: Maryland State Champs, Northern VA District Champs crowned.  Covers: MD state finals, VA district tourneys, VA regional brackets, DC regular season results.  Usually publishes after the Memorial Day weekend tournaments finish up.
    #3: Virginia Regional Results, DC Tourneys.  Covers: VA regional results, State brackets, DC tourney results.  Usually publishes the first week of June.
    #4: Final Prep Baseball Update: Virginia State Champions crowned.  Covers: VA state tourneys, recaps MD, DC, Private School results.  Publishes mid-June once the Va state tourney wraps up.

Northern Virginia

Virginal district tournaments get started last weekend and most are scheduled to finish this week.  The VHSL site has some district brackets already published.  NovaBaseballMagazine has done a great job keeping up conference results and has links to the conference tournaments under its “Standings” links.  Here’s a preview of the district tournaments for local conferences with the leading contenders.

The top four teams from each district tourney form the 16-team regional brackets, to be published later on once all the divisions are finalized.

  • 6-A Conference 5/Concorde: Chantilly and Westfield are the 1/2 seeds; the other four teams in the district all are hovering around .500 for the year, including Oakton despite having a nationally-known recruit in Joe Rizzo.
  • 6-A Conference 6/Liberty: Madison and McLean are the 1/2 seeds as they were last year; Madison lost only one game locally this year and should cruise to the district title.
  • 6-A Conference 7/Potomac: West Springfield and Lake Braddock are the 1/2 seeds, with Annandale hovering.
  • 6-A Conference 8/ Cedar Run: Battlefield the clear dominant team in this small district and is the #1 seed in the tournament.

Previews: Its hard not to squint and predict a regional semi finals of Chantilly, Madison, West Springfield and Battlefield at this point; the question becomes when does Battlefield throw its unbeatable ace Jake Agnos.  If Battlefield can get to a regional final with Agnos on the hill, watch out.

In the 5-A division:

  • 5-A Conference 13/Capitol: Marshall is the clear #1 and the clear 5-A regional favorite, with just one loss all year.
  • 5-A Conference 14: Tuscarora, Stone Bridge and Briar Woods all stand at 5-2 in the district with one game remaining to play to jockey for seedings.
  • 5-A Conference 15: Mountain View and Potomac seem like the teams to beat again.
  • 5-A Conference 16: Halifax, Patrick Henry-Ashland are perennial favorites but this conference is not well covered by DC-area outlets.

Previews: Marshall seems like the team to beat; perennial power Stone Bridge lost its coach Sam Plank and some of its stars to rival new school Riverside, which is currently in Division 3-A while it grows into a 5-A/6-A size.

There are some DC-local teams in the 4th and smaller divisions (mostly in Loudoun County).  We’ll go through them once their brackets are made available on VHSL.  The best 4-A team out there is probably Loudoun Valley, currently in the WP top 10, and Kettle Run is also putting together a great season.


At this point, the Maryland State tournament is underway, with the play-in/round of 32 games played on 5/14/16.   Brackets here at the MPSAA website and direct links to the four State-wide brackets are linked directly below.  Schedule: Regional quarters are on 5/16, semis 5/18 and regional finals 5/20.  State Semis are 5/24 and the state finals are 5/27.

  • Maryland 4-A: Both finalists from 2015 are  “district” #1 seeds in this year’s draw (Severna Park and Gaithersburg); they’ll meet in the State Semis this year if form holds.  2014 state-finalist Sherwood is also a “district” #1 seed and sits on the other side of the bracket with the likes of Dulaney, Parksdale and Bowie.
  • Maryland 3-A: Looks like new blood in this year’s tourney: last year’s champ did not make Regionals, and 2014’s champ Reservoir is set to take on last year’s finalist Mt. Hebron in the first round.  Chesapeake and River Hill look like early favorites.
  • Maryland 2-A: Two-time defending 2-A champ Southern has their work cut out for them to three-peat.  Newly promoted Sparrows Point, 2014 finalist Parkside and last year’s runner’s up Eastern Tech also in the field.
  • Maryland 1-A:  (mostly smaller schools outside the DC area): Last year’s champ is in the field but is not a favorite to advance even out of its own district.

We usually discount the quality of Maryland public school baseball teams versus their Virginia counter parts … but I can’t help if a team like Gaithersburg isn’t better than the likes of Madison or Chantilly this year.


  • DCIAA: the regular season runs through 5/17.  The District tournament quarters are on 5/19, semis 5/23 and the finals on 5/25.   Wilson may finally have some competition, as School Without Walls (SWW) was undefeated mid-way through conference play.
  • DCSAA: the 2016 tournament, if it will occur, has yet to be scheduled.  It does not look like it has actually been held since 2013.

Remember, there’s not usually much suspense in who is winning the DCIAA; Wilson has not lost to a DCIAA opponent in more than 20  years.

Private Leagues: WCAC/MAC/IAC and VISAA/Maryland Private

  • MIAA: No playoff brackets yet, but Spalding looks once again like the class of the MIAA Class A.  Standings here.
  • There’s a 2016 Maryland Private School Tournament scheduled for 5/30 at UMD; it should have some of the better private schools from Maryland, including the non-affiliated but perennial powerhouse Riverdale Baptist.  Details coming later.
  • VISAA: The VISAA playoff brackets were just announced: #1 seeds by the three classes were Paul VI, Greenbriar Christian and Southampton Academy.  Other local teams playing include Flint Hill, O’Connell, and the Potomac School in McLean.  Quarters 5/16, Semis 5/10 and finals 5/21/16.
  • WCAC: The WCAC is midway through its tournament; with semis and finals being held this week.  St. Johns won the regular season but the four top teams all advanced to the semis.
  • MAC: Flint Hill once again cruised to a regular season title.
  • IAC: no news yet on this smaller private DC-area conference.
  • PVAC: no news yet on this smaller private DC-area conference.

My master list of links used to cover HS Baseball:

Local and National High School Baseball Ranking Lists:

These National rankings are dominated by teams in Texas, Florida and California, as you might expect.  These teams can play nearly 40 games and usually have at least 15-20 under their belts before DC/MD/VA teams even get going.  So its somewhat of an accomplishment just to have a local team get some recognition.  In fact, any cold-weather state team appearing in these lists is pretty special.

Major Newspaper Links/Resources for following prep baseball around the state

  • Washington Post’s AllMetSports section with standings and schedule results.
  • The Baltimore Sun’s high school page has information on some of the programs outside the DC area mentioned in the Maryland section
  •‘s coverage of high school sports, but has put limits on the number of stories you can read.
  • Richmond Times-Dispatch has a HS scoreboard.
  • Hampton Roads Pilot (Hampton Roads) has scores for teams in the Chesapeake/Norfolk/Va Beach area.
  • NovaBaseballMagazine: great coverage of Prep baseball in NorthernVirginia (thanks to Joe Antonellis for the heads up on this great new resource).

Local Newspaper Coverage, including links to many local papers covering smaller jurisdictions.

Non-newspaper Links for Local and National Prep Baseball Coverage

Good Twitter accounts to follow:

  • I maintain an open list at my twitter account via this link, which contains direct links to dozens of local resources (including all the below).  Way too many retweets from the travel team accounts especially, but its a good way to keep up with local ball.
  • Prep Baseball Report VA/DC coverage
  • NoVa Baseball Magazine

Written by Todd Boss

May 16th, 2016 at 8:38 am

Nats Prospects: Where to see them in 2016


Giolito may be "the man" but Voth could be a serious rotation candidate himself.  Photo via mlbdirt

Giolito may be “the man” but Voth could be a serious rotation candidate himself. Photo via mlbdirt

(2015’s version of this post)

Now that we’re basically through Prospect Ranking season (though I havn’t seen Fangraphs rankings of the Nats system for 2016 yet … if I missed it feel free to give me a link), and now that the four full season rosters have been announced, here’s a fun little look at where our top 30 Prospects (as ranked by are starting out 2016.  (Note: Bill Ladson previously posted something similar; i’ve just expanded it to the whole big list of prospects).  And here’s a link to every Nats prospect ranking list I know of dating more than 10+ years.

Last NameFirst NamePosition2016 Starting Level2015 Starting LevelDraft/IFA signing YearHow Acquired? Nats top 30 Feb 2016
GiolitoLucasRHPAAHigh A2012 1stDraft1
TurnerTreaSSAAAAA2014 1stTrade2
RoblesVictorOF (CF)Low ARookie2014 IFAIFA3
FeddeErickRHPHigh ALow A2014 1stDraft4
LopezReynaldoRHPAAHigh A2012 IFAIFA5
DifoWilmer2BAAAA2010 IFAIFA6
ColeA.J.RHPAAAAAA2010 4thDraft/Trade7
StevensonAndrewOF (CF)High AShort A2015 2ndDraft8
VothAustinRHPAAAAA2013 5thDraft9
SeverinoPedroCAAAAA2011 IFAIFA10
PerkinsBlakeOF (CF)XSTRookie2015 2ndDraft11
AbreuOsvaldoSSHigh ALow A2012 IFAIFA12
FrancoAnderson3BXSTRookie2013 IFAIFA13
WardDrew3BHigh AHigh A2013 3rdDraft14
SotoJuanOF (corner)XSTDSL2015 IFAIFA15
BautistaRafaelOF (CF)AAHigh A2012 IFAIFA16
ReetzJaksonCLow AShort A2014 3rdDraft17
BaezJoanRHPLow ALow A2014 IFAIFA18
GloverKodaRHP (reliever)High AShort A2015 8thDraft19
WilliamsAustenRHPAAHigh A2014 6thDraft20
KeiboomSpencerCAAHigh A2012 5thDraft21
de los SantosAbelRHP (reliever)AAAAA2010 IFATrade22
WisemanRhettOF (corner)Low AShort A2015 3rdDraft23
LoraEdwinSSLow AShort A2013 IFAIFA24
HearnTaylorLHPLow AShort A2015 5thDraft25
GutierrezKelvin3BLow AShort A2013 IFAIFA26
ReadRaudyCHigh ALow A2011 IFAIFA27
LeeNickLHPAAAA2011 18thDraft28
SkoleMatt1B/3BAAAAA2011 5thDraft29
BostickChris2BAAAA2011 44thTrade30

And, for good measure, here’s every other Nats prospect still active in our system who hasn’t exhausted their rookie eligibility and who has ever appeared on a Nats Prospect list, and where they’re starting (organized by level highest to lowest).

Last NameFirst NamePosition2016 Starting Level2015 Starting LevelDraft/IFA signing YearHow Acquired? 
DavisErikRHP (reliever)AAAAA2008 13thTrade
SolisSammyLHPAAAAA2010 2ndDraft
GoodwinBrianOF (CF)AAAAA2011 1st-SuppDraft
JordanTaylorRHPAAAAAA2009 9thDraft
MartinsonJasonSSAAAAAA2010 5thDraft
GraceMattLHP (reliever)AAAAAA2010 8thDraft
RamseyCalebOF (Corner)AAAAAA2011 11thDraft
HillTaylorRHPAAAAAA2011 6thDraft
BradyMichaelRHP (reliever)AAAOO - AA2009 24thTrade
SanchezAdrian2BAAAA2007 IFAIFA
VettlesonDrewOF (Corner)AAAA2010 1stTrade
PleffnerShawn1BAAAA2011 26thDraft
MendezGilbertoLHP (reliever)AAAA2011 IFAIFA
BacusDakodaRHP (reliever)AAAA2012 9thTrade
BallouIsaacOF (Corner)AAAA2013 15thDraft
DykstraCutter2B/SSAAAAA2008 2ndTrade
KeyesKevinOF (Corner)AAAAA2010 7thDraft
PerezStephenSSAAHigh A2012 8thDraft
SimmsJohnRHPAAHigh A2013 11thDraft
HollandNeilRHP (reliever)AAXST2010 11thDraft
TurnbullKylinLHPHigh AHigh A2011 4thDraft
SilvestreHectorRHPHigh AHigh A2011 IFAIFA
SelfDerekRHP (reliever)High AHigh A2012 9thDraft
JohansenJakeRHP (reliever)High AHigh A2013 2ndDraft
ValdezPhillipsRHPHigh ALow A2009 IFAMLFA
EstevezWirkinRHPHigh ALow A2010 IFAIFA
Marmolejos-DiazJose1BHigh ALow A2011 IFAIFA
ReyesLuisRHPHigh ALow A2013 IFAIFA
RodriguezJefryRHPLow ALow A2012 IFAIFA
AgustinTelmitoOFLow AShort A2014 IFAIFA
LeeAndrewLHPLow AShort A2015 11thDraft
SchrockMax2B/SSLow AShort A2015 13thDraft
Rivera Jr.MarianoRHP (reliever)Low AShort A2015 4thDraft
BenincasaRobertRHP (reliever)XSTAA2012 7thDraft
PimentelDavinsonCXSTDSL2014 IFAIFA
WatsonTylerLHPXSTGCL2015 34thDraft
SpannMatthewLHPXSTHigh A2010 25thTrade
WootenJohnUtilXSTHigh A2012 37thTrade
DavidsonAustinInfXSTLow A2014 13thDraft
DickeyRobbieRHPXSTLow A2014 4thDraft
GunterCody3B (now a RPH)XSTRookie2013 6thDraft
FuentesStevenRHPXSTRookie2014 IFAIFA
EncarnacionRandyOF (Corner)XSTShort A2011 IFAIFA




Written by Todd Boss

April 14th, 2016 at 12:51 pm

Opening Day Payroll, Attendance, Starters & other cool stuff: 2016 Version


2015 opening day image via

2015 opening day image via

My recurring “Opening Day” trivia/useless information post.  Here was 2015’s version, 2014‘s and 2013.  Many of the below links are to Google XLS docs that i’ve updated for 2016 and which are available on the right hand side under “NatsArm Creations.”

Nats 2016 Opening day Payroll: $145,178,886 according to Cots.  This is down nearly $20M from last year’s figure.  We can only hope that Mike Rizzo will be allowed to “spend” that money later in the year at the trade deadline if this team actually needs to spend money to acquire helpful players.

My personal payroll estimate came in at $ $137,286,029 coincidentally; why am I $8M off?  Because Cots basically makes arbitrary proclamations of salary for current year when money is deferred whereas I’m counting it as real dollars.  So for example I’m charging the Nats payroll precisely $15M for Max Scherzer this year while Cots puts the figure north of $22M, and Cots puts all of Papelbon’s $3M deferred 2016 salary on the 2016 books.  So between those two players the entire delta is accounted for.

The question is this: as a Nats fan are you “happy” that your payroll is down nearly $20M in Stephen Strasburg‘s walk  year and while your Season Ticket prices continue to rise?


Opening Day Payroll; MLB

USAToday also publishes opening day salaries for teams and i’m convinced that they’re garbage.  I’ve got a comparison spreadsheet where i’ve put the USAtoday figures side-by-side with Cots’ analysis and for some teams they’re off by more than $25M.  The problem is that USAToday doesn’t count ANY payments handed to and from between teams, whereas Cots does a very detailed auditing of such money.

Nonetheless, here’s USAToday and Cots’ rankings for the 30 teams (this is my first time using this new Table plug in; head to Google XLS to read it if this is too difficult):

Cots RankUSA Today rankTeamOpening Day - USA TodayOpening Day - CotsDelta USAtoday-Cots
12Los Angeles Dodgers$221,288,380 $247,781,668 $26,493,288
21New York Yankees$222,997,792 $227,854,350 $4,856,558
33Detroit Tigers$194,876,481 $198,018,000 $3,141,519
44Boston Red Sox$188,545,761 $197,899,679 $9,353,918
56San Francisco Giants$172,253,778 $172,086,611 ($167,167)
67Chicago Cubs$154,575,168 $171,611,834 $17,036,666
713Los Angeles Angels$137,251,333 $164,673,333 $27,422,000
85Texas Rangers$186,038,723 $157,955,390 ($28,083,333)
98Baltimore Orioles$145,533,782 $147,693,713 $2,159,931
109St. Louis Cardinals$143,053,500 $145,553,500 $2,500,000
1111Washington Nationals$141,652,646 $145,178,886 $3,526,240
1210Seattle Mariners$141,683,339 $141,830,193 $146,854
1312Toronto Blue Jays$138,701,700 $136,782,027 ($1,919,673)
1414New York Mets$133,889,129 $135,188,085 $1,298,956
1515Kansas City Royals$131,487,125 $131,487,125 $0
1616Chicago White Sox$112,998,667 $114,498,667 $1,500,000
1717Colorado Rockies$112,645,071 $112,645,071 $0
1818Minnesota Twins$105,333,200 $105,333,700 $500
1920San Diego Padres$101,424,814 $100,759,500 ($665,314)
2019Pittsburgh Pirates$103,778,833 $99,945,500 ($3,833,333)
2123Arizona Diamondbacks$89,264,063 $98,172,683 $8,908,620
2221Houston Astros$94,893,700 $96,893,700 $2,000,000
2327Cleveland Indians$74,311,900 $96,304,400 $21,992,500
2422Cincinnati Reds$89,955,059 $89,871,228 ($83,831)
2525Philadelphia Phillies$83,980,000 $88,846,667 $4,866,667
2624Oakland Athletics$86,806,234 $86,806,234 $0
2729Atlanta Braves$69,005,791 $86,580,792 $17,575,001
2826Miami Marlins$77,314,202 $74,364,500 ($2,949,702)
2930Tampa Bay Rays$57,097,310 $66,681,991 $9,584,681
3028Milwaukee Brewers$69,282,737 $63,908,300 ($5,374,437)




Opening day Nats park attendance

Opening Day 2016 attendance was announced at 41,650.  That’s down more than 800 from last year (but still a sell-out).  Perhaps the rain forcast kept people away.   Here’s all our home openers in order with attendance, time of game, weather:

  • 2016: 41,650 (4:05 thursday game, 60 and 1.5hr rain delay)
  • 2015: 42,295 (4:05 monday game, 75 and gorgeous)
  • 2014: 42,834 (1:05 friday game, 50s and overcast)
  • 2013: 45,274 (1:05 monday game, 60 and beautiful)
  • 2012: 40,907 (1:05 thursday game 56, partly cloudy)
  • 2011: 39,055 (1:05 thursday game, 41 degrees and overcast)
  • 2010: 41,290 (1pm game monday, beautiful weather 80s and sunny): Phillies invasion
  • 2009: 40,386 (3pm game on a monday, chilly 53degr and overcast)
  • 2008: 39,389 (season and stadium opener), 8pm sunday night, Braves, nat’l tv clear but cold.
  • 2007: 40,389 (in rfk, 1pm game vs Florida, 72degrees
  • 2006: 40,516 (in rfk, tuesday day game vs Mets, 72degr and sunny)
  • 2005: 45,596 (in rfk, debut of entire franchise, 62degr and clear, evening game).

Here’s some attendance milestones for the franchise:

  • Nats park capacity for 2015 seems to still be 41,456 unless they announce an 2016 adjustment.
  • 2015’s opening day crowd wasn’t even close to 2013’s: 45,274.  That remains the regular season record attendance.
  • All time record attendance?  The ill-fated 2012 NLDS game 5: 45,966.
  • The first game in franchise history; 2005 in RFK: 45,596, which stood until the NLDS record-setting game.
  • The long-running regular season attendance record was the great Fathers day 2006 game in RFK against the Yankees: 45,157.  That record stood for more than 6 years.

Opening Day Box Scores and Results

Nats are just 4-8 in their home openers now since moving to Washington.  Just one guy has thrown more than one home opener for the Nats: Livan Hernandez When Livan gets elected to Cooperstown, I hope he’s wearing the curly W.  :-)

  • 2016: Marlins d Nats 6-4.  WP: David Phelps, LP Tanner Roark (Starters: Brian Conley and Roark).
  • 2015: Mets d Nats 3-1.  WP: Bartolo Colon.  LP: Max Scherzer
  • 2014: or  Braves d Nats 2-1.  WP: Luis Avilan.  LP: Tyler Clippard.  (Starters: Jordan Zimmermann and David Hale).
  • 2013: or  Nats d Marlins 2-0.  WP: Stephen Strasburg.  LP: Ricky Nolasco
  • 2012:  Nats d Reds 3-2.  WP: Craig Stammen. LP: Alfredo Simon (Starters: Gio Gonzalez and Mat Latos)
  • 2011:  Braves d Nats 2-0.  WP: Derek Lowe.  LP: Livan Hernandez
  • 2010:  Phillies d Nats 11-1.  WP: Roy Halladay.  LP: John Lannan
  • 2009:  Phillies d Nats 9-8.  WP: Jamie Moyer.  LP: Saul Rivera (Nats Starter: Daniel Cabrera)
  • 2008:  Nats d Braves 3-2.  WP: Jon Rauch.  LP: Peter Moylan (Starters: Tim Hudson and Odalis Perez)
  • 2007:  Marlins d Nats 9-2.  WP: Dontrelle Willis.  LP: John Patterson
  • 2006:  Mets d Nats 7-1.  WP: Brian Bannister.  LP: Ramon Ortiz
  • 2005:  Nats beat Arizona 5-3. WP: Livan Hernandez. LP: Javier Vazquez

How about Season openers?

Record: 5-7.  # times home/away: 6 home, 6 away.

The Nats managed to lose 6 of their first 7 season openers … only winning in 2008 when debuting their new stadium.  And Jon Rauch did his darndest to blow that opener too, coughing up the lead in the 9th to give Ryan Zimmerman a chance at glory.

2016: away: Nats d Braves 4-3.  WP Treinen, LP O’Flarity (starters Scherzer, Teheran)
2015: home: Mets d Nats 3-1.  WP: Bartolo Colon.  LP: Max Scherzer
2014: away: Nats d Mets 9-7.  WP Aaron Barrett, LP Familia (starters Strasburg, Dillon Gee)
2013: home: Nats d Marlins 2-0.  WP: Stephen Strasburg.  LP: Ricky Nolasco
2012: away: Nats d Cubs 2-1.  WP Clippard, LP Marmol (starters: Strasburg and Ryan Dempster)
2011: home: Braves d Nats 2-0.  WP: Derek Lowe.  LP: Livan Hernandez
2010: home: Phillies d Nats 11-1.  WP: Roy Halladay.  LP: John Lannan
2009: away: Marlins d Nats 12-6.  WP: Nolasco, LP; Lannan
2008: home: Nats d Braves 3-2.  WP: Jon Rauch.  LP: Peter Moylan (Starters: Tim Hudson and Odalis Perez)
2007: home: Marlins d Nats 9-2.  WP: Dontrelle Willis.  LP: John Patterson
2006: away: Mets d Nats 3-2.  WP: Glavine, LP: Hernandez
2005: away: Phillies d Nats 8-4.  WP: Lieber, LP: Hernandez

Opening Day Starter Trivia

Here’s my Opening Day starters worksheet in Google docs.  Here’s the answer to some fun Opening Day Starter trivia:

  • Leader in Opening day starts: remains C.C. Sabathia with 11, though he’s missed the last two years.
  • Leader in consecutive opening day starts: Felix Hernandez, making his 8th consecutive, 9th overall.
  • Justin Verlander returned to Opening Day duties, getting his 8th career opening day start; he remains in 3rd place actively.
  • For the Nats; Max Scherzer gets his 2nd and Stephen Strasburg continues to have three.
  • Ten (10) pitchers made their first opening day start in 2016.
  • There’s 8 guys out there still active with 4 or more Opening Day starts who did not get them this year, and they include a number of former Aces who might be on the way out of the game (Tim Lincecum in particular, but also guys like James Shields, Bartolo Colon and Yovanni Gallardo)
  • The most ever?  Tom Seaver with 16.  The most consecutive?  Jack Morris with 14.