Good article. Keep in mind another aspect. The Nats have taken chances with pitchers in the draft, and if their message is consistent, that they are going to look after the long-term care and career of their prospects, that is a strong message to send to a kids' parents who is drafted out of slot to sign with the team.
I think Zimmermann stepping up so far is really going to help them survive this (or soften the blow). First, obviously, is the example he sets being a guy that was managed this same way. More importantly, though, they aren't shutting down their #1. They're shutting down their #2.
Great article in the Post today on the Nats. Despite the 8-game winning streak coming to an end they still have the best record in baseball and a 4 1/2 game lead with Atlanta losing last night. I'm kind of glad Atlanta is staying close, it will keep the Nats sharp.
But overall yeah they're doing awesome. Especially given the injuries to Werth, Morse, Ramos, Zimmerman, Storen, Desmond and others. In terms of production, Werth seems to be back to norm, Morse has picked right up and LaRoche is doing above and beyond. It's not just the pitching, although that's certainly the strength of the team. Their depth is outstanding thanks to a good and deep farm system, and they've been great in close ballgames and have a great road record.
Now just three more on the west coast and then they get 17 of the next 22 at home. Most of that against subpar opponents (3 vs Mets, 3 at Philly, five vs Marlins, four vs Cubs) but the Cardinals and a key series vs the Braves in there as well. Should be exciting.
The most interesting aspect of the season is that the Nats and Braves still have 6 head-to-head left in the season. IINM both have relatively weak schedules left, so it should shape up to be a good race to watch.