Enough is enough. This Washington Nationals squad was not supposed to perform this way during this season at any point and time. The Nats have now slipped to under .500 and held a players-only meeting to help clear the air about how they are better than this. That can’t be good, right?
Nats held a players-only meeting after the game. The overarching message: we’re good, let’s start playing like it. Let’s play for each other.
— Dan Kolko (@masnKolko) July 4, 2018
Assuming the Nats don’t light a fire under each other in the next few series before the All-Star break, I’d say the Davey Martinez experiment is over. The Nationals should swallow that bitter pill and beg Dusty Baker to come back to take over this under-performing squad. The Nationals’ front office is largely to blame and Mike Rizzo should be very concerned about the team’s window for success, especially with Bryce Harper’s looming free agency.
If they fall tonight, the Nats will have lost 17 of their last 23 and fall back to .500. Can't imagine this happening under Dusty Baker.
— Michael Jenkins (@JenksNBCS) July 3, 2018
So, why make the change before the All-Star break when there is still time to turn it around? For starters, the Nats haven’t been very competitive against the good teams, and have even fallen flat against the “inferior” squads as well. Additionally, the Nats are not even winning the close games that they were winning at this point last year. They just don’t seem to have the same swagger and urgency that they showed under the leadership of Baker as well.
Nats have played a lot of unimpressive games this year and are now 8-`16 in one-run games. But though Boston won this one, 4-3, the Nats, with three homers, played the better game.
— Thomas Boswell (@ThomasBoswellWP) July 3, 2018
So, where do the Nats begin to pick up the pieces? It would start with more than a players-only meeting, and begin with picking up the phone to call Baker with a near-blank check asking him what it would take to salvage a near-lost season. The Nats are currently sitting at 42-43 for the season, and a whopping seven games back of the surprising Atlanta Braves. A closer look at the Wild Card standings show them 5.5 games behind the qualifying slots, looking up at four other teams above them clawing to stay competitive.
NL East Standings as for 7/5/18:
1: Atlanta Braves
2: Philadelphia Phillies
3: Washington Nationals
4: New York Mets
5: Miami Marlins
— HIGHLIGHTS ARENA (@HighlightArena) July 5, 2018
Enough is enough. Dusty Baker should have never been let go, but there is still time for the Nats to rectify a huge off-season mistake.
Photo Credit: Federal Baseball