Washington DC Preview
After 2 consecutive of losing in the World Series, these Badgers have blue balls. It's essentially the same starting team as last year, with a slightly different bench. The middle of the order is once again very strong with Cliff Bonilla, Heatchcliff Cameron, Fernando Blanco, Placido Gonzalez, and Alan Connelly. The team expects a little more out of catcher Livan Feliz this year and feels if they do, they won't be beat. Gary Waters should again be a 20/20 guy at leadoff and could push 30/30 with some luck. Heath Baez remains as the 8th hitter, but don't sleep on him as he hit .270 last year.
The pitching staff traded for Daisuke Aoki, hoping he can improve a middle relief that was stastically solid, but came up short in some key situations. He will set up Fireman Chip Wingo, who did not allow an earned run through the all-star break and challenged Bob Thigpen's real life record of 58 saves. Twice defending Cy Young winner Santiago Navarro still plans on kicking ass, but can the team find a dominant 2. Various players have temporarily stepped into that role, then stepped out. Though only 23, Marvin Blank appears ready to fill that role allowing Pedro Zapata to slide back into a more natural third starter role. Hopefully Anthony Byrne can recapture some season 1 magic and Paul Stahoviak will live up to his new contract. If one falters, expect them to be replaced by the surprisingly effective Jimmie Sheets. Sheets has shined out of the back of the rotation and long reliever spots.
The team may make a trade mid-season if it feels it's still a bit short, but the hopes are very high in Washington once again.