Thursday, March 3, 2011

More on Wang: Maybe We Shouldn't Write Him Off Yet

Reports have Chien-Ming Wang pitching in an intrasquad Minor League game on Friday, just another step back toward recovery. After Mac boldly predicted that Wang might make the Opening Day roster weeks and weeks ago, CMW had a terrible bullpen session to start pitchers and catchers in February. Essentially all the Nats beat writers proclaimed that Wang could never be ready. Even Wang himself said he didn't see being ready before late April or May.

But then there was hope. Future sessions had Wang looking strong, with a biting curve and the ability to make live batters swing and miss. Does that mean he'll win 20 games in 2011? Certainly not.

It does mean, however, that there's just one more guy who has a legitimate shot at making the Opening Day roster. And it's a guy that has won 19 games in one season during his career. Between Livan Hernandez, who always breaks even, Jason Marquis, who many expect big things from coming off an injured/bad year and is in his last year under contract, and Chien-Ming Wang, who once as a runner up for the AL Cy Young, the Nationals could have starting pitching that is not atrocious.

Notice we didn't say "great starting pitching," or even "good starting pitching." But the veterans (which I use loosely for the oft injured CMW) could provide the opportunity for others, like Jordan Zimmermann and Ross Detwiler, to prove something to the Nationals without worrying about their former injuries.

So would I put money on Chien-Ming Wang making the Nationals roster on March 31st? Probably not. I know this is a lot of if's, but if he does, and the stars align, and he ends up being healthy, the Nationals pitching could end up being better than many expect.

No comments:

Post a Comment