Saturday, February 11, 2012

Washington Nationals may surprise Phils in NL East for 2012


Davey Johnson will be at the helm for the Washington Nationals for the first full season in 2012. He came to the Nationals team towards the middle of the season last year. Johnson has a knack for turning teams into winning machines. Now the Nationals may be the next team to climb up the ladder of the NL East to challenge the Phillies for the NL East crown.

Johnson's playing career took him to Philadelphia as a player in 1977 and 1978 as he spent 13 seasons as a MLB player before calling it quits in '78 ending his career as a Cub after being traded to the Cubbies from the Phillies on August 6th 1978 for Larry Anderson.

In Davey Johnson's managerial career, he took the New York Mets to a World Series championship in 1986. He also managed other teams to first place division finishes: Mets in '86 and '88, Reds in '94 and '95, and the Orioles in '97.

The Nationals will have plenty of good players this year. Among them, Jayson Werth and newly added reliever, Brad Lidge, are old teammates from the Phillies. The addition of a healthy Stephen Strasburg and re-signed Michael Morse, who led the team in batting last year, will add a lot to this 2012 Nationals team.

The Washington Nationals management announced that they weren't too happy with Phillies fans invading their ballpark in such large numbers last year. Business is business though, and I don't know why there is such talk from the Nats management. Phillies fans are passionate and spending money at their park in Washington DC, I don't see what's so wrong with that.

It should be fun to see what happens this year with the Nationals. The rivalry is starting to build with this team and the Phillies. The New York Mets rivalry with the Phillies has waned, it's not what it used to be. The Nationals may be inheriting the 'most rivaled' team for the Phils this season, we'll see if all of these comments made by the Nats ownership towards Phillies fans helps fuel this rivalry even higher in 2012.  

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