Last year the Nats inexplicably won 80 games, one rainout against the Dodgers from that magically .500 plateau. How they did it is even more of a wonder considering the injuries and lack of production they had from each spot in the lineup at one point or another. One of the most fascinating aspects to the Nats 2011 season is that things were able to fall the way they were while players seemed to play like it was two different seasons - first-half and second-half. While sorting through stats I saw some crazy number splits for certain players that certainly doesn't paint a picture of a team that was one game under .500.
Let's dive into the numbers a little bit, bullet point style:
- Jayson Werth hit .215/.319/.362 in the 1st half and .255/.345/.426 in the 2nd half.
- Ryan Zimmerman hit .254/.342/.408 in the 1st half and .306/.361/.460 in the 2nd half.
- Wilson Ramos hit .251/.328/.425 in the 1st half and .288/.342/.471 in the 2nd half.
- Ian Desmond hit .223/.264/.308 in the 1st half and .289/.338/.417 in the 2nd half.
- Rick Ankiel hit .232/.299/.333 in the 1st half and .246/.294/.389 in the 2nd half.
While in opposite land...
- Danny Espinosa hit .242/.332/.460 in the 1st half and .227/.310/.352 in the 2nd half.
- Laynce Nix hit .274/.315/.502 in the 1st half and .202/.269/.349 in the 2nd half.
Some staggering splits with Werth, Zim, Ramos, Desmond, and Ankiel all killing it in the 2nd half while Espinosa and Nix had hot starts but faded as the season progressed.
If you look closely you will see that these players account for 7 of the Nats 8 2011 starters, the only one absent from this list is Michael Morse who was hot all year (minus April); .306/.351/.535 vs .299/.369/.566 - 1st vs 2nd.
It baffles my mind that the team can have such drastic splits between seemingly all of their starters yet they still managed to win 80 games.
Now, imagine if everyone could put it together at the same time...