Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tip Your Caps to Capps

As we prepare for the All-Star Game this evening, it only seems fitting that a Nats blog should write about the Nats only ASG representative: Matt Capps.

This season Capps has the 3rd most saves in the NL (23) and has been basically automatic in every appearance. He has a tendency to give you a mild heart murmur every once in a while, but he's blown only 4 saves all season.

If you look back at Capps' career, it's obvious that this season is by far his best ever. The only time he's had more than 23 saves in a full season was last year with Pittsburgh. He had 27 all year in 2009 and posted an atrocious 5.80 ERA. It's safe to say that Capps will exceed that level in 2010. But will it be with the Washington Nationals?

It's hard to tell what the Nats front office thinks about this idea at this point, since most trade rumors are focusing on Dunn and Willingham. But Matt Capps' trade value will never be higher than it is today. He's an All-Star for the first time in his career, he's sporting an ERA just over 3.00. He's pitching with purpose as a guy who was dumped by the team that drafted him.

With any contender that is interested in Capps, he would almost certainly not be a closer barring a late season injury to that team's closer. He is a closer with the Nats because they needed someone to hold a place for Drew Storen. With another organization, he could be an above average setup guy that helps take a team deep into the post-season. The Nats shouldn't balk at this opportunity, especially if they're able to land another strong pitcher. The problem is, contenders aren't going to be willing to trade away a strong player in return for Capps.

So what say you, Capitol Baseballers? Is it time to pass the torch to Storen this year since the Nats aren't playoff bound? Should they hold on to Capps as the closer of the near future and leave Storen to that task in a few years?

I tend to think you get whatever you can for him, even though I really like him, because his numbers show he may be far outperforming what he is actually capable of. I await your comments, and enjoy the festivities tonight!

1 comment:

  1. I think that regardless of how well Storen has done so far (and he has been fantastic), that we give him the rest of the year to settle in. Unless the return on Capps is pretty solid, and it should be, then we should hold onto him for the rest of the year.

    As of now Capps projects to be a Type B free agent, mostly due to his dreadful ERA in 2009. That would guarantee a 2nd round compensation pick (in the 70 range), so unless we get something better than that in return lets not risk it.

    Storen is the closer of the future, but lets let him get his sea legs a bit more.