Apr 26, 2010, 12:47 PM EDT
Good morning from the D concourse at Dulles International Airport, where my flight to Chicago awaits. The Nationals open a three-game series tonight against the Cubs, which means another reunion with old friend Alfonso Soriano.
It's hard to believe it's been four years since Soriano roamed left field at RFK Stadium, mashed 46 homers (still a Nats record) and stole 41 bases. That remains, in my opinion, the best individual season in Nats history, though a case can certainly be made for Ryan Zimmerman's Gold Glove/Silver Slugger combo last year.
It's easy to forget now, but there was plenty of uproar over the Nationals' decision to let Soriano walk as a free agent in the winter of 2006. They took plenty of heat from fans and media alike who felt they should have made a better offer to keep Soriano … or at least traded him at the July 31 deadline.
Four years later, though, I think it should be noted the Nats made the right call. Soriano hasn't been close to the same player he was in 2006. He's battled several injuries, he's lost both power and speed. And last week he was chastised by Cubs TV analyst Bob Brenly for failing to hustle.
Oh, and did we mention Soriano is only in the fourth year of an eight-year, $136 million contract? Would you prefer the Nats were on the hook for that right now?
Seems to me the only remaining debate is whether the Nationals should have traded Soriano instead of letting him go as a free agent. What could they have gotten for him in a trade? Well, the best offer IRead more »
NL EAST STANDINGS
WED: Nats at Phillies, 7:35 p.m.
FRI: Nats at Mariners, 10:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Mariners, 9:10 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Mariners, 4:10 p.m.
MON: Nats at Dodgers, 8:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Dodgers, 10:10 p.m.
Full season schedule
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.
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