They have the pitching, the hitting and the famous Davey Johnson as their manager. This is said to be Johnson’s final year of coaching so the Washington Nationals are already readying their victory speeches for a World Series title. There is only one problem with that. There are 162 games left to play and at least one very capable contender standing in their way; the Atlanta Braves.
I fully understand that the Nationals are well coached and they know they have games to play but they also have a bit of a swagger to their collective step. They “know” they have the best pitching staff and the best of lots of other things, so they are going to win the World Series or bust. Across the division from them and several hour’s drive south sit the Braves. The Braves also have a plan; to go out and play baseball.
There will be a rivalry intensified and there will be close games. There might be a fight or two here or there but probably not considering the leadership style of the teams. In the end the Nationals plan to keep their seat at the top of the division almost as an afterthought to their destiny to win the World Series. Honestly, it just makes me want to see them have to fight for it.
The Braves will go out and be a family. They will enjoy each other’s company day in and day out and play the game the right way. There will be slumps and streaks of all kinds as well as ups and downs. In the end, I think you might see a Nationals team that has to kick themselves in the behind to battle the Philadelphia Phillies for a Wildcard spot. Wouldn’t that be interesting?