Jim Bowden writes about the Nats on what he thinks the team should do in 2016 and beyond. A good off-season piece, and there is little to disagree with. We would add to this piece is that the MASN regional TV money that has not been resolved could be the much needed cashflow to allow Mike Rizzo to take some chances on a top Free Agent. We hear this Jordan Zimmermann guy is really good!
— Jim Bowden (@JimBowden_ESPN) October 13, 2015
The article is partially hidden unless you are an ESPN Insider and here is how Jim Bowden summarized what he would do, “My suggestion: Go for it. This is still a good team. The window to compete for a championship is still open, and to not go for it would be a mistake. Ownership has continually given GM Mike Rizzo’s regime the resources to build a championship club, and it shouldn’t stop now. Put the right skipper in place and give it one more season, and if it doesn’t work out, then the Nationals retool, get younger and lower payroll. This 2015 season didn’t go as planned, but many of the pieces are in place for them to be as good in 2016 as they were expected to be this season.”
Bowden mentions “if it doesn’t work out, then the Nationals retool, get younger and lower payroll” and we would say more specifically that you could still “Go For It” and if it appears you are out of the playoff hunt on July 31st 2016, you could trade players like Strasburg and do some other retooling. It is the anti-Preller approach in that the Padres GM did not do that after he picked up some 1 year contracts like Justin Upton and longer term players like Craig Kimbrel, and the Padres faded from post-season contention and did not trade Upton or Kimbrel.
Even with the drama surrounding how Jim Bowden’s tenure as the Nats GM from 2005 to early 2009 ended in the Smileygate drama in the off-season prior to the start of the 2009 season, Jim Bowden has continued to be a mostly positive voice for the Nats as you can see in his summation. This is in stark contrast to some who have left DC like Rob Dibble and Don Sutton who have a more difficult time saying positives about the Nats and for that we want to thank Jim Bowden for staying positive on the Nats while many are not. If you have not had a chance to listen to Jim Bowden on his MLB Network Radio show on Sirius/XM, give it a listen.