One of the cool things about spring training starting up is all the pre-season predictions that come out. One of the best places to get information about those kind of things is from Baseball Prospectus. Their odds came out and according to it, the Washington Nationals and their fans are going to have a great season ahead of them.
Their simulations have the Nationals averaging 87 wins which may not seem a lot, however, it is the highest in the entire National League East. Their simulations gave the Nationals the division 52%. When they didn’t win the division, they got a wild card spot 15% of the time. Their 67.9% playoff percentage is the highest within the division. Their World Series win percentage was 7.6%, which is the third highest in the National League.
It’s no surprise that the Nationals have such great odds. The team added a workhorse starter in Dan Haren to an already deep rotation. They added a closer in Rafael Soriano to strengthen a bullpen with Tyler Clippard and Drew Storen and added Denard Span to a lineup with guys like Bryce Harper and Ryan Zimmerman.
The Nationals were a great story last year, and they’ve really built their team the right way. Did they luck out in getting two, once in a generation type of players in Harper and Stephen Strasburg in back to back drafts at number one? Sure, but they drafted guys like Storen and Zimmerman and Jordan Zimmermann. The Nationals and their fans enjoyed the fruits of that labor last year, and should enjoy it even more this year.