Monday, October 3, 2011

Pre-Season Prediction Mania pt. 1

Earlier this year we put our money where our mouth was. We were stupid enough to make some predictions on the season, and as you see below - we made complete fools of ourselves (mostly). Here are our original votes for the IBWA-DC Pre-Season Poll - our own bold prediction crow-eating will occur later. After these wounds heal.

Enjoy our suffering below - Included is what we wrote at the time, followed by what actually happened.

1) Who will lead the Nats in home runs in 2011?
What we wrote: Ryan Zimmerman - With the loss of Adam Dunn, this isn't the boldest pick in the world, but it could also be Werth and LaRoche. We're going with the franchise here.

What actually happened: Zimmerman spent a two-month chunk of the season hurt, while Michael Morse went full on Beast Mode, hitting 31 Bombs and leading the team.

2) Who will lead the Nats in RBI?
What we wrote: Jayson Werth - Zimmerman could be the guy here, too, but we sent this in before Riggleman basically said Ryan Zimmerman would be the clean up hitter quite a bit.

What actually happened: The same beast, Morse, destroyed all comers by racking up 95 RBIs - a full 29 more than the 2nd place finisher.

3) Who will lead the Nats in stolen bases?
What we wrote: Danny Espinosa - We're not convinced Nyjer's even going to make the team in 2011, let alone be a starter. After him, the guy with legs that we can bet on is good old Espi. Hopefully he gets on base enough to make us right.

What actually happened: Espinosa decided to steal a bit less than we would've hoped and new lead-off hitter, Ian Desmond led the team with 25.

4) Who will lead the staff in wins?
What we wrote: John Lannan - Yea, that's right: John Lannan people. Again, we sent this in over 2 weeks ago. Now, with Ross Detwiler's and Yunesky Maya's success in the spring, plus the near locks that are Livo and Marquis, we're not convinced Lannan will be with the Nats on Opening Day. None the less, we think that, should Lannan make it into the rotation, he has the potential to be the wins leader if looks at all like he did to end 2010.

What actually happened: BOOM! Nailed it!!! 10 wins to lead the staff!!

5) Who will lead the staff in saves?
What we wrote: Sean Burnett - We think there's a chance that Drew Storen doesn't make the Opening Day roster this year. He has options in his contract, he's been lit up this spring, and getting a little extra time in the minors couldn't hurt. That leaves Burnett and Clippard to share the closers duties this season, and we think Burnett gets the advantage.

What actually happened: Wow. We were really off base on this. Storen's Spring Training debacle turned out to be just a power pitcher working up to speed. Despite the fact that Riggleman never actually named Storen as the teams closer, he quickly ascended to that post - never to relinquish it. Sean Burnett did, however, nab 4 saves - so we were only 39 saves off...

6) Which starter will lead the team in starts?
What we wrote: Livan Hernandez - This is easy for us. Livan is the workhorse of the rotation. Then, with Lannan not making it through all of last year in the majors, Marquis coming off injury, JZimm not 2 years from Tommy John surgery, and a host of other guys that are bound to get a chance in the rotation this season, Livan is probably the guy.

What actually happened: Livo actually finished a close second with 29 starts. John Lannan became the new workhorse of the staff, starting 33 games this year.

Tune in tomorrow for Part 2! Same bat time, same bat channel.

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