Fans should be thankful that:
1. There is baseball in DC.
2. That there is competitive baseball in DC.
3. That Steve provides this blog for us to celebrate, commiserate, educate, elucidate, and speculate.
4. That the Nats have decent owners.
5. That the Nats have Mike Rizzo. Not perfect, but definitely better than most alternatives.
6. That we have a team that makes it make it worth showing up for (almost all) the games, and often enough, will make you say “I can’t believe what I just saw!”
As far as the players, they should be thankful for:
Scherzer: for Twitter (specifically the animal rescue accounts). Because otherwise Erica would adopt all the odd-eyed dogs, and Max would need an extra plane for the world’s largest pack of dichro hounds.
And that Erica did not actually take out the trash the day she accidentally temporarily threw out his second no-hitter jersey.
Strasburg: that seven-year contract.
Gio: that his brother wasn’t on Jose’s boat. And that he pitches with his left hand.
Joe Ross: that his arm is holding up better than his brother’s. So far.
Roark: that he’s back in the rotation. And arb eligible. That might explain his grin in his official photo.
A.J. Cole: that an opportunity presented itself, and he was able to take advantage of it.
Mark Melancon: that he replaced someone who was so very replaceable. And that he did it well.
Giolito: that everyone who matters still has more faith in his pitching skills than his baking skills.
Dusty: that he has a two year contract.
Jayson: although Old Man Time is getting closer, Jayson has managed to stay one step ahead of him.
Clint: that Ryan is better with frequent rest days.
Tony Two-Bags: that he stayed healthy so we can enjoy his joy at playing the game.
Ramos: LASIK. And that the market for free-agent catchers is thin this year.
MAT: that Dusty sees something in him that pretty much everyone else doesn’t.
Bryce: that a number of great baseball players have had an average year after a great one.
Ben Revere: that the oblique injury didn’t impair his fielding.
Trea: that the opportunity to make an impact on arrival in MLB presented itself, and that he could run with it.
Murphy: a lot to be thankful for, I’m sure. But nowhere near as much thankfulness as the Nats fans have while watching him play with joy, skill, and success.
Danny: a healthy baby boy. (Yeah, I know that the fail/flail on the “reveal” piñata should have been an indication of how the season was going to go, but “healthy baby boy” is way more important than the K rate in the long run. #FamilyFirst).
Ryan: that Personal Services contract. You know you have a good thing when MLB has to change the rules so no one else gets the same deal.
Jose Lobaton: that the post-season has presented two opportunities for game-winning homers . . . and he’s been able to take advantage of them. (The fans, and his teammates, are thankful for his abilities with Gatorade cups.)
Chris Heisey: another year’s opportunity to keep the active record for pinch-hit home runs.
Pedro Severino: that an opportunity to show his abilities behind the plate has presented itself.
Sammy Solis: that 3-3-5 triple play.
Henley: that fans don’t make contract decisions.
Rizzo: A.J. Preller. Smiles and points to head as Trea zips by (pursued by a frustrated coyote. Or was that a second baseman?).
Jonathan Papelbon: Safe Track. So that Metro got booed worse than he did.
That’s my two cents: please continue to add your ideas below!