DCSB: Did the Nats quit on their season too soon?

There are at least two major D.C. sporting events to look forward to this weekend, and at least one ghastlysore of shame to avoid. (Full disclosure, all I really want to write…
The Washington Post
D.C. Sports Bog
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Could Dave Martinez and the Nationals still be playing for something? (Jonathan Newton / The Washington Post)

There are at least two major D.C. sporting events to look forward to this weekend, and at least one ghastly sore of shame to avoid.

(Full disclosure, all I really want to write about is how my car broke down in the middle of a downtown intersection last night. Let’s do that below. It’s Friday, why not?)

The things to look forward to? Tonight, the Mystics will play the first WNBA Finals game in the franchise’s 21-year history, and that bandwagon still has plenty of seats. Sunday afternoon, the Redskins will open a fifth season under Jay Gruden, still looking for their first season-opening win. It’s been a muted offseason — there are still thousands of tickets available to Washington’s home opener next weekend — but all it takes is one win to at least tickle the optimism of a fanbase not quite sure what to expect. (Here are five keys to Sunday’s game, and here’s a provocative piece from one of the biggest Redskins fans I know about his conflict over rooting for Adrian Peterson.)

Then there are the Nats, who continue to lose in the most aggravating, annoying, remote-throwing of fashions, even while the Braves and Phillies have proved unable to pull away. That’s the premise for Boz’s latest piece, which asks an interesting question: Did Washington wave the white flag too soon?

“How much closer might they be to the National League East lead if they had held ’em just a little longer rather than deal when there was no deadline urgency?” he asks.

Well. Here’s my answer: These Nats aren’t particularly good. If they were two games closer to the division lead right now, they would find a way to give those two games back. If they had kept some of their bats, some other part of the team would have gone flying into the distance before exploding in a red-and-white cloud of disappointment. It isn’t happening this season. They’re three games below .500. They’re not good. They didn’t wave the white flag too early. They probably didn’t wave it early enough.

Anyhow, with that out of the way, you’ve got to let me tell you about last night. (All the usual sports links are below, if, for whatever reason, you don’t care about my car.)

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