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All-Star odds

Jun 29, 2012, 10:00 AM EST

US Presswire photo
Ian Desmond is making a late push for All-Star consideration.

Fan voting for the 83rd All-Star Game officially came to an end at midnight, so if you were planning a last-minute ballot-stuffing barrage in support of the Nationals, you're too late.

Not that it was likely to do much good. The chance of any position player getting voted in as an All-Star starter is miniscule, considering none of the eight guys on the ballot (Wilson Ramos, Adam LaRoche, Danny Espinosa, Ian Desmond, Ryan Zimmerman, Michael Morse, Rick Ankiel, Jayson Werth) ranked even in the top five at his position when the most recent totals were announced Tuesday.

That doesn't, however, mean the Nationals won't be well-represented 11 days from now when Kansas City hosts the midsummer classic. Quite the contrary, they're poised to send multiple players to the game for the first time since 2005 and perhaps even send more than two players for the first time since the franchise arrived in town. Those selections will just have to come from fellow player balloting or the selection of National League manager Tony La Russa.

Rosters will officially be announced Sunday afternoon, so there's not much wrangling or posturing left to do. With that in mind, let's runRead more »

106 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 29, 2012 at 10:24 AM

    Another day, and still a 3 1/2 game lead.Why does every loss mean the Nats are destined for the cellar while each victory means the Nats are World Series bound?

  2. MicheleS - Jun 29, 2012 at 11:18 AM

    SOFA!Right now, I am giving you a standing Ovation!! People in my office are looking but no biggie! Your game thread yesterday ROCKED!NatsJack, what you mean we are in first place?? Really? Hard to imagine. I don't go down that path when we lose, but on the win, I may drink the Koolaid, but not to the point of Talking PPPPlayOFFS!!! I have them in the books for 86 wins (I want more) so I am not going overboard.

  3. Laddie Blah Blah - Jun 29, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    Man, when EJax has an off day, he goes all in! Hope he got that out of his system for the rest of the season.But the lineup has its mojo back. Atlanta will be a big test. Davey and the BP need Det to go 7, or 6, at least.

  4. natsfan1a - Jun 29, 2012 at 11:48 AM

    I voted for Gio, SS, and Desmond, though of course I'd love to see more Nats there.On Desi's case for, you forgot "he's LaRussa's fave player." ;-)IAN DESMONDThe case for: He's second among all MLB shortstops in home runs (13), RBI (41) and slugging percentage (.485) and is first in extra-base hits (37). And he's played sparkling defense, ranking fourth among NL shortstops in UZR/150 (7.8).The case against: Desmond's .276 batting average isn't anything spectacular, and his .304 on-base percentage is not good at all.Odds of being named an All-Star: 50 percent

  5. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 11:54 AM

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  6. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 11:58 AM

    During the SABR convention, there was a session by official scorers. Here is one lady's writeup of that session. Fun stuff, including Nats stuff.Ryan Zimmerman hit a ball into his own shirt. How would you score that one?sabr42-official-scorers-panel

  7. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 12:05 PM

    I'm really enjoying the writeups from SABR. Here is a nugget for you armchair GM's. It's obvious, but cool to see it quantified.SABR42 Day One: Afternoon Presentations & Knuckleball movieJune 29, 2012 By: Cecilia Tan Category: SABRSABR42 Day One: AfternoonI saw three research presentations (out of four possible) this afternoon, and then went to meet up with my fellow panelists for the Women in Baseball panel, which I had the honor of speaking on. I can’t really blog that one since I was on it and couldn’t take notes! So someone else will have to write up what that was all about, haha.This afternoon I saw:Vince Gennaro: Value Strategies for Building A RosterWilliam Spaniel: The Fear of Injury, Explaining the Delay in Contract ExtensionsDavid W. Smith: Shutting Down the Running Game by Limiting Steal AttemptsHere are detailed descriptions on each:Vince Gennaro: Value Strategies for Building A RosterVince Gennaro led off the afternoon research presentations with a discussion of not one but FIVE areas that teams could be investigating in order to maximize value, reprising some of what he talked about at the SABR Analytics Conference. Five areas aimed at paying the right amount for players or the needed talent. “There’s never a silver bullet answer to this stuff,” he said, so you have to look at lots of little pieces of information to put it all together. Vince is one of the sharper analytical minds I’ve had the pleasure to work with (he wrote numerous articles for the Yankees Annual, and he’s now the president of SABR and I’m the publications director).Value=Acquiring expected wins at “below market” priceValue = $/WARThe five elements being considered:1. quality of opposition2. platoon players inefficiently priced3. translation from regular to postseason4. optimizing timing of transaction (value is affected by the calendar)5. buying risk at the right price (MLB teams do a poor job valuing risk)1. Playing against tough opponentsThe unbalanced schedule creates tremendous inequities in who a batter faces and who a pitcher faces. So player stats are not apples to apples. Park effects have been around for a long time and are well accepted when it comes to evaluating a player’s numbers. But there is no stat for measuring and adjusting for the opposition. We’re working on it: I try to partner with others with more math sophistication than me to calculate this.CJ Wilson vs Ricky RomeroIn 34 starts CJ Wilson had 14 starts against the bottom third of teams vs Romero pitched in the tough AL east. Their ERAs were nearly identical 2.94, 2.92, but if you impute the imbalance, it was more like 3.12 versus 2.74 — that would be a much bigger swing. Nearly forty points. At least one team I spoke to in the national league did this adjustment on pitchers to acquire. They took a reliever from the AL east who didn’t seem that great (and so isn’t being paid that much) and now he’s doing much better.

  8. Feel Wood - Jun 29, 2012 at 12:21 PM

    If the Nats Park official scorer was at that session, I hope someone asked him this question:Whenever a play occurs that requires the scorer to choose between hit or error, invariably you will take halfway into the next at bat to make your ruling. Presumably you are looking at replays from all possible angles, consulting with your colleagues, and then looking at the replays again to validate and verify that you are making the correct decision. This of course takes time, and it is good to be thorough about decisions that have such earth-shattering consequences. I get that. But then why in the hell do you ALWAYS end up reversing your ruling soon after?P.S. If anyone who uses Gameday is wondering why the updates sometimes take so long to appear, this is why. They have to wait for the official scorer to rule on the play before sending it out.

  9. natsfan1a - Jun 29, 2012 at 12:22 PM

    I'm standing next to MicheleS on, er, standings, as usual. I think that the only thing once can broadly generalize about in re. commenters is that there will always be someone making broad generalizations about commenters. ;-)As previously noted, I'm enjoying this season's ride, and first place, immensely. As for the Serious, let's worry about that at such time as they get there. First off, there's the little matter of playing out the rest of the season. Then there's the matter of winning the division or one of the wild card spots. But wait, there's more. You got your division series, not to mention your NLCS. Eh, how about we just sit back and enjoy this E-ticket ride for now? Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! (What? Yes, I do have the bar down. What? I'll put my hands in the air if I want to, thankyouverymuch. They're my hands, after all. Humph.) Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! That was fun – want to go again?NatsLady, I've not been to a SABR national conference, as I was away during the last one held here. That said, I always enjoy the local chapter meetings that I attend. On Zim, I don't recall that play off the top of my head, but I do recall him fielding a ball and losing it in his jersey one time – back in ought seven, I believe.

  10. A DC Wonk - Jun 29, 2012 at 12:54 PM

    Nominating my favorite comment from last thread:NCNatsie said… Why it's okay to get out of Coors Stadium with a split, and why nothing that happened there has any meaning: It's a clown park, bro.

  11. A DC Wonk - Jun 29, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    And another off-topic comment . . . relating to a former Nat (this, from Wednesday — from youcantpredictbaseball)Adam Dunn had a day that would please the Mayans supporting the end-of-the-world-in-2012 campaign: He neither walked nor struck out. This was the first time all season it’s happened, barring a game where he pinch hit.- He also hit an infield single.

  12. natsfan1a - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:05 PM

    Speaking of former Nats, our old friend Nick the Stick is injured again.

  13. smurff - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:07 PM

    I voted for Strasburg, Gonzalez, Clippard, and Desmond. Ian is very deserving, based on his performance this season. Hope he gets recognized for it by LaRussa and the players.There is no doubt that Clip is an all-star reliever. Whether he makes the team or not.

  14. Section 135 - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:07 PM

    In other news, the national media is already starting to make fun of Bob Carpenters home run call on Morse. The worst part is that he did the same thing(calling it a catch) earlier in the series on a Desmond HR.

  15. JD - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    Nats All stars: 1.SS 2.Gio 3.Clippard 4.Desmond 5.ALR

  16. Feel Wood - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:37 PM

    Section 135 said… In other news, the national media is already starting to make fun of Bob Carpenters home run call on Morse. The worst part is that he did the same thing(calling it a catch) earlier in the series on a Desmond HR.What's the problem with Carpenter's calls there? Both of those HRs looked like catches until you saw the replays. Fowler did a good job of deking instead of throwing his glove in a tantrum like Nyjer Morgan would have. You expect an announcer to get it right every time when even the batters weren't totally sure until they saw the ump's call?

  17. JD - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:45 PM

    Peric, I am intrigued by your Greinke campaign however I still don't see what players/assets we can give the Brewers to make that happen. If I'm the Brewers I start with Rendon + Goodwin +. Greinke will be the hottest commodity at the trade deadline with teams led by the Yankees, Rangers and the Angels in the mix.

  18. SonnyG10 - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:47 PM

    I agree Feel Wood. Both HRs did look like catches on first viewing. In fact, on the one Morse hit, I'm thinking "Why is he still running the bases?"

  19. baseballswami - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:48 PM

    Feel Wood – both of those home runs were extremely deceptive. You couldn't see the ball go over the fence until the slow motion replay. If Fowler is anywhere near that play – run until they officially call you out. As for yesterday's game thread – it was more active and more entertaining than most of our games – earlier time? Or just giddy after being bombarded with offense and craziness for a couple of days? Nothing ho-hum about a coors field series. As for EJax – I have heard pitching people talk about getting a "dead arm" about mid-season and we are almost at mid-season. Up until yesterday I believe he had the most innings pitched of our starting staff. I also believe, based on past history , that he has some kind of problem with the altitude at coors. Hoping he bounces back. There are bound to be bumps in the road for all of them.

  20. JD - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:48 PM

    BTW, I think Dempster may be more realistic as a rental (Eury Perez + Rosenbaum).

  21. JD - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:51 PM

    Swami, I wouldn't worry about anything bad pitching wise in Colorado nor would I get too excited about all the offense; it's not real baseball in Colorado. Coincidentally; that was quite the pitching performance by JZim on Wednesday.

  22. Feel Wood - Jun 29, 2012 at 1:53 PM

    baseballswami said… Feel Wood – both of those home runs were extremely deceptive. You couldn't see the ball go over the fence until the slow motion replay. If Fowler is anywhere near that play – run until they officially call you out.Exactly. Which is why it's stupid to make fun of a PBP announcer when he calls it a catch rather than a HR.

  23. nwells2 - Jun 29, 2012 at 2:08 PM

    Well, it helps that Tony LaRussa has a serious man crush on Ian Desmond so I'm kind of expecting him to make it. I can't see why Strasburg or Gio won't make it. Same with Clippard…only pitcher with double digit saves and assists…a very Washington Nationals statistic.

  24. natsfan1a - Jun 29, 2012 at 2:20 PM

    I'm with Feel and Sonny on the HR call.

  25. Tcostant - Jun 29, 2012 at 2:34 PM

    JD –Rendon can’t be traded until he a year after he signed his first contract (Pete Incaviglia Rule (a)). That is after the trade deadline, so that is out. I guess another nice thing from the CBA, with the shorter deadline to sign draft picks, these guys will now be available for trade the following year at deadline time.Footnotes: – (a) As a result of the Expos trading Incaviglia immediately after signing him, Major League Baseball instituted a rule whereby a team cannot trade a drafted player until he has been under contract to the club for at least one year. This is now known as the Pete Incaviglia Rule).

  26. Theophilus T. S. - Jun 29, 2012 at 2:47 PM

    Looking at the schedule, if either Strasburg or G. Gonzalez were to pitch in the All-Star game it appears that both would be on regular rest. However, if either or both were to pitch, neither would be available until the Marlins on the 15th. All in all, I'd be just as happy if at least one of them went fishing for three days.l Then they'd be ready coming out of the break.As to the home run call, I tuned out after Jackson's blow-up. Given the Dwayne Wise play/umpire screw-up over the weekend, it makes sense to call every close play an out.As to Jackson — speaking of the All-Star break — if Strasburg or Gio is in the AS Game, then it looks like Jackson pitches the weekend before and Friday or Saturday coming out. When from all appearances he badly needs a break. Depending on how the pre-break homestand is going, I'd sit him down over the weekend and give Wang or Gorzelanny a start.

  27. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 2:51 PM

    TCos, that's so, but there is a catch–he can be a "player to be named later" in a deal, if later = later than his 1-year date. Thanks, Michele, you're too kind.

  28. Theophilus T. S. - Jun 29, 2012 at 2:53 PM

    F.P. compared Desmond to Omar Vizquel last night after hurdling the runner on the DP. Thinking about it, that is a pretty apt comparison. If you've got a SS that fields like Vizquel and hits like Carlos Guillen (OK, needs a few more BB), then you're pretty well set.

  29. Tcostant - Jun 29, 2012 at 2:57 PM

    Player to be name later are not prime part of the trades; just add ins/ They is usually a list of two to four guys, and the aquiring team gets to pick one at a later date. I've never seen a deal, where the player to be named later was the major prospect by the aquiring team.

  30. JD - Jun 29, 2012 at 3:02 PM

    Tcostant, I know the rule and I understand it. Last year Colorado traded Jimenez to Cleveland for 2 pitchers who fell into that category and yes indeed they were big prospects (White and Pomerantz). That deal did not formally conclude until the prospects could be legally traded. My point; you can trade any one you want as long as the trading partner is willing to wait a month.

  31. rogieshan - Jun 29, 2012 at 3:07 PM

    5% of the voters here don't believe Strasburg deserves to be an all-star. Seriously?

  32. baseballswami - Jun 29, 2012 at 3:11 PM

    JD, et al — no secret that I am a huge fan of Jordan's — I am amazed that Strasburg and Gio have been mentined in the ASG conversation but not Jordan. He leads out team in innings pitched, is 15th in the National League. He also is 12th in the NL in era, Stras is 9th, but Gio is 13th. Difference is – Gio has 10 wins. I think we all know that the difference is run support. Jordan has more innings pitched than Gio and a better era. Case made? That win/loss record can be deceptive. That being said, we have 3 pitchers in the top 13 in the national league in era. Oh – and next to Jordan in innings pitched for the Nats? EJax, who would probably passed Jordan had he been himself yesterday. Jordan is awesome!!!!!!

  33. MicheleS - Jun 29, 2012 at 3:51 PM

    Rogishan.. I am betting those are the people that want all our players to be well rested over the all star break.Swami/JD.. Love me some JZ, most under rated guy we have on the staff. Sadly, it's a popularity contest – even with the pitchers- so JZ is going to have to wait at least another year.

  34. PChuck - Jun 29, 2012 at 3:53 PM

    Your 20% for Clippard is way off. I haven't seen a AS roster projection that didn't include him.

  35. Steady Eddie - Jun 29, 2012 at 3:54 PM

    Carp's call on Desi's HR gives the key to why Carp (and TV watchers!) had trouble tracking the ball: "Ian Desmond, right over the glove of Dexter Fowler.” In other words, for both HRs, he and we saw the ball disappear immediately after it disappeared behind Fowler's glove which closed at the same time. So until seeing the replay, there was no way to tell whether the balls had disappeared INTO or BEHIND the glove.Also, everyone worried about EJax — please, this is silly. His preceding start vs the Os, he went 6.1 with 4 hits, 1 ER (on a dinger), 1 BB, 5 K against a good-hitting team in a hitter's park. He has a long history of problems with (presumably, the altitude at) Coors Field and this was just one more in a series of starts there that demonstrate it.

  36. baseballswami - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:02 PM

    I saw a list on mlb this morning of otherwise good pitchers who have huge era's at coors. I guess we'll see in his next start – here vs the giants? So close to the All star break – some rest is coming, guys!

  37. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:05 PM

    Your 20% for Clippard is way off. I haven't seen a AS roster projection that didn't include him.Well, technically, it could be that all those other guesses were way off. They are all just guesses, after all, none of them right or wrong until after the actual pick. Which I suppose means anything but 50% is wrong–he can't be "20% on the team"–he's either on it or he's not, it's 50-50.

  38. MicheleS - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:06 PM

    Okay.. after reading Kilgore's article I am completely won over by the kid. Time to splurge and buy the Jersey.Bryce Harper wants to be a National his entire careerI had my doubts at first about the person, not the player, but not anymore.

  39. Feel Wood - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:10 PM

    PChuck said… Your 20% for Clippard is way off. I haven't seen a AS roster projection that didn't include him.Here's one. Mine. Setup guys almost never make the All Star team. The only time they do is when, like Clippard last year, they are one of the few good players on a bad team that by rule must have at least one All Star. Clippard does not have that going for him this year.All Star teams do usually include closers, but not more than one or two per league. Clippard has not even been a closer for much of this season, so there's absolutely no chance that better pitchers who have been closing all season are going to be passed over in favor of him.Putting Clippard's All Star chances at 20% is actually being pretty generous. I'd put them at zero.

  40. JD - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:10 PM

    Soul, It's very hard for relievers to make the all star roster and Clippard is lightly behind (WAR) Aroldis Chapman and Kimbrel. I think 20% odds are just about right.

  41. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:10 PM

    I just googled it, and looked at the first result that came up. Clippard is not on it. So I didn't do a comprehensive search, so maybe that's the only one out there like that.

  42. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:11 PM

    MicheleS, I bought the Harper earrings yesterday… Should arrive Tuesday.

  43. Section 222 - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:11 PM

    baseballswami makes a good point about JZnn, which is the reason I didn't pick Gio for the team. If he were still dominating as he did in May he'd be hard to leave off, but with all the great starters in the NL, it's hard to justify, especially when the No. 3 starter on his team has numbers that are so close to his, and even arguably better. I think Stras is the guy to represent our rotation. He has a better ERA, a better WHIP, and even more strikeouts (though not by much). Remember also that the players and coaches select five starters and three relievers. Seems to me that Dickey, Cain, Cueto, and Stras are assured of spots. McDonald from Pgh has a good shot as well. Are we really going to get two starters in that group? I don't know how many of LaRussa's nine picks will be starting pitchers, but it probably won't be that many. He's more likely to pick position players who he'll have more of a chance to use in the game. There are only nine innings after all. Our best hope for a second pitcher is Clipp in the player vote or manager selection. He's a guy you'd want on your team to get a big out. As for Desmond, somehow I don't see the players voting for him. But LaRussa likes him so he would seem to have a shot. And I still see Harper making it one way or the other. He's just too exciting to send on a fishing trip.My picks: Stras, Clipp, and Harper.

  44. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:12 PM

    FWIW, I agree with FWood, it seems unlikely he gets picked.

  45. JD - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:14 PM

    As much as I like Greinke I am against trading Rendon and Goodwin because we have so few real position prospects throughout the system. I wouldn't mind trading: Marrero, Perez, Hood or even Tyler Moore in a package for Greinke provided we can sign him long term but I think Milwaukee can probably do better.

  46. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:15 PM

    Just a thought: given that Clipp was in last year, and somebody suggested earlier that might count against him going back (he's "had his turn"), might the fact that Pence bailed his butt out on the throw home be a further argument against sending him again, in some minds? Just a random thought.

  47. Section 222 - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:17 PM

    Also, everyone assumes the All Star relief pitchers will be closers, and that might be the case if the manager were still selecting the whole pitching staff. But in a secret ballot player vote, I think Clipp has a shot. The players know that closers aren't necessarily the best relievers on the team. They know that until this year, Clipp pitched the highest leverage situations in the 7th and 8th. And, if they want to win the game, they might very well put him in the top 3. I'll be interested to see if they pick Chapman. Kimbrell seems like a lock, even after last night's blown sve.

  48. JD - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:19 PM

    Sec3 and Swami, I am big JZIM fan but his 1st half is simply not as good as Gio's. (1.3 WAR vs. 3.1). As usual fans focus on the last couple of weeks were JZ has been better than Gio but the overall body of work is still pretty one sided in Gio's favor. Having said that I agree that SS may be the only Nat Starter named to the team along with Desmond.

  49. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:21 PM

    Thirteen pitchers, usually 9-10 starters and 3-4 relievers. Clip has a chance but is far from a lock.

  50. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:23 PM

    I didn't have JZnn, and would, in fact, take Gio ahead of him. But if I picked a full roster, Strasburg, Desmond, and maybe LaRoche as a third 1st baseman, but probably just the two.

  51. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:24 PM

    Despite the somersaults, I don't see how they can not pick Chapman. Clips stats are dragged down by his rocky start (not that I'm giving him a mulligan there). If LaRussa looks at recent history and last year, he might pick him. Interesting situation because LaRussa has no stake in the result, but Clip, Kimbrell and Chapman do…

  52. natsfan1a - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:26 PM

    Great story, MicheleS. Thanks for the link.Interesting point on LaRussa not having a stake in the result, NatsLady.

  53. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:27 PM

    The roster is 34 players, still, I believe. Does the manager (Tony in this case) have some leeway in how many are pitchers? I think he does.

  54. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:34 PM

    Any time we get to chirping about CMW or Rick Eckstein (or Rick Ankiel, for that matter), remember when this was us:Conan O'Brien, on how he killed time during his recent visit to Chicago:"I did everything you could do. I ate well. I drank a lot. And early this afternoon, I beat the Cubs, 11 to 2."

  55. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:41 PM

    From the CBA (rules for ASG selection).The fans select 9 position players (for the NL), 8 by the initial vote and 1 in the "last man" vote. The players select five (5) starting pitchers, three (3) relief pitchers and two (2) players at each nonpitching position.LaRussa selects nine (9) players (the “additional players”), of whom five (5), shall be pitchers.

  56. Feel Wood - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:43 PM

    Our best hope for a second pitcher is Clipp in the player vote or manager selection. He's a guy you'd want on your team to get a big out.Or to give up a hit to the only batter he faces and then vulture a win, like he did last year.

  57. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:46 PM

    Thanks, NL.Off-topic, but following up on an old one: Cortizone. Thanks to the Prestigious Old-School Way-farer, I was steered to this:Anabolic steroids versus catabolic steroidsAnita KuanHartford Health ExaminerCatabolic steroids are often confused with anabolic steroids. Anabolic steroids build muscle mass. In contrast, catabolic steroids have the opposite effect – they break down muscle mass.Anabolic steroids are synthetic (man-made) drugs that are related to male sex hormones. They are prescribed to treat hormone problems such as late puberty. They are also used to treat cancer or AIDS patients who have suffered from significant muscle loss. However, anabolic steroids are often abused by bodybuilders and athletes who want to build muscle and enhance physical performance. Illegal use of anabolic steroids is associated with serious health problems such as high blood pressure (hypertension), liver disease, heart problems, breast growth and shrinking of testicles in men, body hair growth in women, acne, and aggressive behavior. In adolescents, anabolic steroids can stunt growth.“The abuse of steroids is a big problem in high schools as well as in professional athletes,” says Debbie O’Toole, a personal trainer who instructs fitness and nutrition in Fairfield, Connecticut. An estimated 660,000 students (14 to 17 years of age) in the U.S. have admitted to steroid use as of the year 2005.Catabolic steroids (also referred to as corticosteroids) are routinely used to treat various medical conditions such as severe allergic reactions, lupus or severe asthma. Corticosteroids are closely related to the hormones that are normally produced by the adrenal gland. One of the most common catabolic steroids is cortisone. Cortisone is used to reduce pain and swelling and to reduce itching and inflammation associated with skin conditions, bad insect bites, or severe reactions to poison oak. Another common catabolic steroid is prednisone. Prednisone is often used to treat autoimmune conditions such as lupus or arthritis. Catabolic steroids can have serious side effects, including high blood pressure (hypertension), diabetes, increased risk of infection, cataracts, bone loss (osteoporosis), muscle weakness, deposits of fat in chest, face, upper back, and stomach, changes in appetite, weight gain, water retention and mood changes.Anabolic/catabolic steroids

  58. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:54 PM

    So that answers my question about why cortisol shots are legit.

  59. mick - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:56 PM

    Gio, Strass, LaRoche, Clip and Desmond I expect to be All Stars and frankly Bryce toohay2k said…Ryan Clark has Sickle Cell Anemia…When I read hay2k's above post, it reminded me of an old old joke about the late Lester Maddox who was racist governor of Georgia about 50 years ago… Lester goes in to see his doctor, his doctor says, Lester I have some good news and some bad news, first the good news, your going to die. Lester Maddox says, holy jeez, if that's the good news, what the heck is the bad news? The doc says, you got sickle cell anemia"lol

  60. mick - Jun 29, 2012 at 4:58 PM

    Lets win tonight Nats!!!!

  61. Feel Wood - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:02 PM

    Mark's 30 percent chance of Harper being an All Star is also way low. Harper's chances are much closer to 100%. Don't forget who ultimately calls the shots on the All Star Game. Selig, you say? No. It's FOX. It's their ratings on the line. FOX wants the Harper/Trout ASG storyline. It will be the theme of their coverage. If Harper and Trout are not chosen by the player vote (Trout probably will be, Harper probably not) they will definitely be on the last-man ballot. And if Harper is on the last-man ballot, there's no way he won't win. Teenage girls have smartphones, and they know how to use them.

  62. peric - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:08 PM

    Teenage girls have smartphones, and they know how to use them.Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha … and they like to leave marriage proposals in lockers and see the same movie 3-4 times. Not sure the managers and coaches of the All Star game will listen to that argument … but it is pretty good logic.

  63. Feel Wood - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:10 PM

    "And at age 19, with only two months of big-league service time, he hasn't quite established himself as being worthy of standing alongside the game's very best."And this is Exhibit A for the last-man vote. Harper's Hotties will have a million votes cast before the "is he really worthy" fuddy-duddies are done looking up historical precedents and comparing WAR.

  64. peric - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:14 PM

    I am still pondering the odds of Rizzo making a big push for Grienke now instead of waiting … they have a stronger argument for an extension now whilst sitting in first place on the strength of the best rotation in baseball up to this point. Adding Grienke would continue that throughout the season and give the Nats what amounts to a really dominant rotation, on paper, to start off next season. And given the number of young players they are relying on offensively it makes too much sense. Takes longer to develop offensively as we are seeing with Bryce Harper …Meanwhile, in AAA, Corey Brown has 18 homers, 7 triples, and 15 doubles, a 15 game hitting streak and a .304 batting average. Rather have Grienke and you can keep Bourn instead it seems prudent to go with Brown with Goodwin coming up the rear.

  65. Section 222 - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:15 PM

    Or to give up a hit to the only batter he faces and then vulture a win, like he did last year.True enough. That was pretty ironic. I always thought it was silly how so many of our fans were excited that Clipp won the all-star game when he failed against the only batter he faced.But seriously, do you think the players and coaches who vote for three relievers are going to remember that one play in last year's ASG, or the times they've struck out themselves against him, or seen highlights of him on MLB Network, which they all watch.

  66. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:19 PM

    But seriously, do you think the players and coaches who vote for three relievers are going to remember that one play in last year's ASG, or the times they've struck out themselves against him, or seen highlights of him on MLB Network, which they all watch. Yes. All of those.

  67. Section 222 - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:20 PM

    Feel, you're exactly right about stats making no difference in fan voting. But I'd take it one step further. I doubt that the players look at stats either. They know these guys, they've played against them, and I seriously doubt they are going to compare Clipp's WHIP to JJ Putz's or Hanrahan or some other closer who has more saves than he does. They'll decide based on who they want on their team, and therefore, Clipp has a shot.

  68. Section 222 - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:21 PM

    Yes. All of those.Ok wiseguy. Which of those recollections will have more influence on their votes?

  69. Faraz Shaikh - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:29 PM

    Sofa, your bleacher report ASG selections were from may 14. long before Clip became a closer I think. not that Clip is on my ballot.

  70. Faraz Shaikh - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:34 PM

    those interested, Giants have fired 4 consecutive shutouts against dodgers and reds. we are facing them starting tuesday.

  71. MicheleS - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:34 PM

    Sofa.. thanks for the steriod breakdown. Now we all know.Feel wood.. Yup, if Bryce's on the Last Man in Ballot, those teenage girls will bombard the site. (I know, my niece is smitten)

  72. peric - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:35 PM

    Bryce: Before the Nationals played the Yankees in mid-June, Harper told his father, “I don’t want to be a Yankee. I want to beat them.”Ahh, I hope its true and not just Boras/Gluvna hype. Because if I were Bryce that would be all I would be thinking about … some way to get to the world series at the same time as the Yankees and totally demolish them.

  73. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:42 PM

    I did a write-in for TyMo. where's Jordan Zimmermann?

  74. peric - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:49 PM

    If I'm the Brewers I start with Rendon + Goodwin +. Greinke will be the hottest commodity at the trade deadline with teams led by the Yankees, Rangers and the Angels in the mix.JD,Its a less-than-one-season rental now. Albeit there may be competition from teams like the Braves and Yankees … yet that is where the extension and selling the Nats long-term comes in.Rendon won't fly. Too much of an injury history. Not sure about Goodwin, but I doubt it. What the Brewers need and want is pitching.Storen-Karns-Meyer plus one position player and that I believe would be Lombardozzi. That might be enough … Before anyone goes crazy … and I probably would have last season … the Nats cannot go to the draft and replenish as they have in the past. We are seeing that now with the cap and the difficulties in signing Giolito. If they don't sign Giolito they basically had no draft … now they have to hope for sleepers like Derrick Norris. They still have Purke, Solis, Robbie Ray … and Grienke is a proven major league quantity who is likely headed for this year's all star game. Next year there will be a cap on International signings. Restricting the Nats FO even further. That means they are going to have start thinking about making some trades for promising prospects on other teams. And that's where trading Adam LaRoche may come in. With Tyler Moore, Michael Morse, Chris Marerro, and YES Ryan Zimmerman there is no room at first base. With a very young AAA (23 years old) AAA Carlos Rivero who can play shortstop, plus Espinosa, plus Zach Walters (acquired in the Marquis) trade the Nats have it covered. And then there's injury prone Anthony Rendon.There's also the possibility of an FA signing. So, Zim can safely be moved to first base to try to avoid a third consecutive injury riddled year. That was the bone of contention against signing him to that contract : the injuries. I don't know how they are going to manage it but the Nats are going to have to start coming up with creative ways to acquire young talent. My guess it that is likely Rizzo and Clark's biggest headache right now. And they'll have competition from organizations like the Cubs with Jed Hoyer and Theo Epstein leading them. Its interesting to note how quickly their former teams have fallen since they left.

  75. peric - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:51 PM

    JD,The Nats won't pull the trigger on the trade for Grienke without an extension in hand. Just like before. No extension, no trade.

  76. Ratiocinational - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:57 PM

    I hope Clip makes it. Maybe La Russa will be consider the fact that he won the ASG for the NL last year (albeit by giving up one hit to the only batter he faced). And remember, the year before that, Capps won it (also by pitching to only one batter). The more pitchers we send to the ASG, the better the chances that a NATS pitcher wins it for the 3rd year in a row!!!

  77. peric - Jun 29, 2012 at 5:59 PM

    fuddy-duddies are done looking up historical precedents and comparing WAR.Looks to me as if Harper will likely manage to be the ZIPS/Bill James projections and end up with a 3 or higher WAR. Harper basically carried the offense for the team with the best record in the NL. For most all the time after he was called up. That was enough for me to write him in.

  78. Ratiocinational - Jun 29, 2012 at 6:02 PM

    Correction: Clip recorded one out, but faced more than one batter. Otherwise, he couldn't have gotten a win. Duh.

  79. Steady Eddie - Jun 29, 2012 at 6:04 PM

    FeelWood@1:02 & 1:10 –Rockin' and Rollin' with reality!That is, you are correct, sir.Not only are managers and players irrelevant to the Last Man vote, the vote is a two-fer: generate excitement/interest/viewers, generate texting fees for MLB to take a cut.

  80. Theophilus T. S. - Jun 29, 2012 at 6:16 PM

    In with Peric on no Bourne, not on Greinke. Greinke more and more seems like a head case. Somebody's going to pay too much for too many years and discover him curled up in the fetal position in his hotel room sometime a couple of years from now. It might be sad but I don't want it to be at the expense of $75MM and a half-dozen prospects. Brown should be given an opportunity to show himself off in August-September (maybe after Moore cools off) and a chance to win the CF job in Spring Training. Not sure who loses the musical-OF game but it will be the last chance to find out what they've got.

  81. Brian Halma - Jun 29, 2012 at 6:17 PM

    I will insert a random question, but I think it fits in a bit with the thread. When most cities invest in a new stadium the reward is getting an All-Star Game – shouldn't DC be high on the list to get the game? Since Bud was thwarted in his efforts to destroy the Expos, and he now has a FOB (Friend of Bud) as owner, I'm assuming that would eliminate any of his objections.

  82. Tcostant - Jun 29, 2012 at 6:24 PM

    Brain -The reason I heard in the past, is D.C. won't get an All-Star game until the area around of it is built up (think Restaurants and Bars).I'm not sure that's fair, but the appears to be the reason.

  83. Steady Eddie - Jun 29, 2012 at 6:29 PM

    The large holes around Nats Park are completely the reason. Bad luck in opening the park in 2008 just as the lesser Depression hit.The holes are slowly filling up, tho, so we may be in contention for 2015 or 2016 or so.

  84. Steady Eddie - Jun 29, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    Theo, I'm with you on Grienke, not really because of the head case thing — he may be OK outside of a big high-pressure media market, and especially with a tight team like the Nats who could be supportive — than because we can't afford him on a long contract if we want to resign JZimm, Stras, Morse or a big bat replacement, etc. not unless we can get out from under that miserable MASN yoke of Angelos'.

  85. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:04 PM

    Put up a post on why Clip didn't pitch yesterday. Would appreciate any thoughts y'all have.Managers Aren't Always Stupid–Really!

  86. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:06 PM

    Clip faced one batter in the All-Star Game He got two strikes and then gave up a single which Pence grabbed and threw out Jose Batista at home plate, ending the inning. The NL scored in the next inning and Clip became the winner.All Star 2011 Box Score

  87. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:10 PM

    This seems strange to me. If Span is really past the concussion why wouldn't you keep him and trade the Hammer? twins-open-to-trading-denard-span-not-josh-willingham

  88. Ratiocinational - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:20 PM

    Thanks for the reminder NatsLady.

  89. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:24 PM

    It was the first time in All-Star game history that a pitcher won the game without getting an out. (Matt Capps got one out the year before). Wasn't a technically a "vulture" but close enough.

  90. Steady Eddie - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:26 PM

    Nats Lady — good blog post, I certainly agree with your conclusion as to yesterday for all the particular reasons you gave, and your underlying point — when you put in your closer in a tied road game in the ninth or later, you're putting him in for two innings not one — is well taken. My only disagreement is that it's not as near-absolute a rule as you seem to suggest. If we'd had an off-day scheduled for today, it would have made sense to use Clip for two. OTOH, if he'd pitched the night before, no. If it was the night before and we were in a position to get no better than a series split, maybe you put him in. If it was against a tough team at that point in the series with a weak team coming up next, may make sense to use him. If it's later in the season in a tight pennant race, may make sense to use him. Etc.As a general approach to these situations, youru basic point of "it's two not one" is the right starting point/default but you have to look at a bunch of other considerations each time.

  91. peric - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:29 PM

    This seems strange to me. If Span is really past the concussion why wouldn't you keep him and trade the Hammer? I'm not sure there's room for either guy with Harper, Brown, Moore, Rendon, Goodwin, Perez, and then there's Werth for a another six years. Span isn't as good offensively as Revere and Revere doesn't have his injury history making Span expendable. Plus Aaron Hicks a switch hitter should be ready at some point.

  92. Faraz Shaikh - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:33 PM

    Even if JZ deserves to be all-star, most likely schedule will not permit him to pitch.

  93. CN - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:35 PM

    NatsLady,The Twins have Ben Revere who would be the full-time CF, which it seems like they planned for the last year, but they couldn't move Revere. Also, it may be at a point where the org feels like they can get more in return than what Revere himself would bring to the table.

  94. peric - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:40 PM

    not unless we can get out from under that miserable MASN yoke of Angelos'.Selig almost HAS to make this happen as Boz predicts. You can't give Angelos that kind of stranglehold over another team's revenue and then take away their only means to be relevant and competitive … putting a cap on the first 10 draft picks and soon on International signings! Its likely why the Dodgers way overpaid that Cuban player. Even Kasten is doing it! If Selig takes all of that away then he is going to have to give the Nats the ability to sign high-end, young free agents … or free-agent-to-be's.

  95. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:47 PM

    Steady–agree. The situation is very different if there is an off-day. I just wanted to get the conversation started because as much as you hear managers are in lock-step with how they use bullpens, bloggers/analysts are in lockstep with their critiques of same. Thanks!

  96. DWS - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:49 PM

    Knowledgeable people help me out. Who does that baseball tune? "We're talking baseball"?

  97. MicheleS - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:51 PM

    DWS.. I think it is Terry Cashman (from google)

  98. MicheleS - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:51 PM

    And I meant I googled it, not that Terry Cashman is from google

  99. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:54 PM

    Also, I had almost put in a comment about Clip being perfectly capable of going two innings, but I felt I had already written enough. The problem is, hindsight is wonderful, but who knows if the game is going 9, 10, or 14?

  100. Soul Possession, My Hitterish Sofa - Jun 29, 2012 at 8:14 PM

    DWS, do you mean this one?

  101. JamesFan - Jun 29, 2012 at 8:15 PM

    As many have said, sometimes the best trade is the one not made. I do not see a glaring hole in the Nats line up assuming that Zim and Morse hit to their norms. I don't see a need for any more outfielders and the ones being named don't impress. We have pitching in depth in starters and relievers. Therefore, I do not want to see Rizzo make a trade for trade sake at the deadline. I would rather use and keep what we have. Let's talk trades after the season.

  102. Scooter - Jun 29, 2012 at 8:21 PM

    NatsLady said…This seems strange to me. If Span is really past the concussion why wouldn't you keep him and trade the Hammer?I don't follow the Twins, but here's my guess: because they need the slugger and not the leadoff hitter. They're an entirely different kind of player. Altogether.You don't trade a guy because he's bad; you trade him because what you get back improves your team. (You know this, but you seem to have forgotten.)

  103. smurff - Jun 29, 2012 at 8:27 PM

    Really good article about how Trout and Harper compare to the past on ESPN.

  104. NatsLady - Jun 29, 2012 at 8:40 PM

    Scooter, I'm just thinking if they want to rebuild and compete, it's not going to be next year, it's going to be at least two years. I'm more looking at Willingham's age.

  105. Scooter - Jun 29, 2012 at 8:48 PM

    Okay. Like I said, I don't follow the Twins, so I didn't know that they wanted to rebuild.Even then, though, rebuilding teams don't always just say "Okay, all the old guys out of the pool!" I think we do GMs a disservice when we assume they follow a simple win/rebuild dichotomy.Enjoy the game tonight. See you after.





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