Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Jim Chat Transcript

His answer about the medical staff got cut off, but you get the gist. I'll have commentary later, but here's the raw transcript.
Jim Bowden 12/16/2008 11:00 am - 12:08 pm
10:20 am Topic: Nationals baseball

10:53 am Nice contract with Willie Harris, I think this was a great pickup. Will he be starting?

10:59 am Thank you. Willie Harris was one of the best 10th men in the NL last year. He's capable of playing four positions well-- CF, LF, 2B, 3B. He was a good influence in the clubhouse-- our players look up to him and he is prepared to play everyday. We anticipate him being a valuable player off the bench for us over the next two years.

10:59 am Has Nick Johnson fully recovered from his wrist injury?

11:04 am Nick came into Washington to see medical director Wiemi Douoguih and hand specialist Dr. Thomas Graham within the last 10 days. They feel that he will be 100-percent by the beginning of Spring Training.

11:04 am Will Dmtri be playing for the major league team at all next year?

11:06 am Dmitri battled injuries last year and continues to battle diabetes. He's worked very hard this offseason and lost considerable weight. We expect him to be in the same shape in Spring Training that he was in when he won the NL Comeback Player of the Year award in 2007.

11:07 am In terms of trades and free agents, what changes did you notice at the winter meetings this year?

11:11 am There is little doubt that the economy and recession has had a dramatic impact on every aspect of all clubs' operations

11:11 am Mr. Bowden, how pleased are you with the results of the Rule 5 draft?

11:14 am Mike Rizzo, Dana Brown, Kris Kline and our Rule 5 expert Bill Singer did a tremendous job scouting, analyzing and prioritizing our Rule 5 board. We are very pleased to have drafted Terrell Young who our scouting department felt had the highest upside of any pitcher in the draft. Subsequent to the draft, we have received positive feedback about Young from multiple clubs.

11:15 am Who should we expect to be called up from the minors next season?

11:18 am Of all of the players in our organization, more clubs ask for Jordan Zimmermann in trades than any other player. Last year, Jordan was a combined 10-3 with a 2.89 ERA in both Harrisburg and Potomac. He will be given consideration to make our rotation out of Spring Training.

11:19 am Any update on Texiera? I would LOVE to see him wearing a Nationals uniform.

11:24 am Our ownership and baseball operations department targeted Mark Teixeira from the very beginning as our number one offseason priority and our ongoing negotiations reflect our commitment to doing everything we can to return Mark to his hometown region with the Washington Nationals.

11:24 am Injuries devestated the Natioanls last season. Has anything changed as far as the off season program or training regimen, or was it just a case of terrible luck that incapacitated the team in 08.

11:35 am We revamped our entire medical department led by new medical director, Dr. Wiemi Douoguih who was trained by the Jobe-Kerlan group and has worked closely with Dr. James Andrews of Alabama, Dr. Timothy Kremchek of Cincinnati and Dr. Lewis Yocum of Los Angeles, three of the most renowned baseball-centric orthopedic doctors. We also hired John Philbin as our strength and conditioning coach. He's the founder of the NSPA (National Strength Professionals Association) the internationally recognized certifying agen

11:35 am Who do you foresee as our closer? Is the job Hannrahan's to loose? thanks

11:40 am With our present bullpen, Joel Hanrahan will be given every opportunity to be our closer. He has a 95 mph fastball with a power slider and his 93 Ks last year ranked 2nd among NL relievers. If he continues to improve his command in and out of the strike zone he has the potential to be a successful closer in the future.

11:40 am What is the status of Justin Maxwell? Two years ago he seemed to show a lot of promise.

11:43 am Justin Maxwell has overcome his injuries and is finally healthy. He showed improvement during the instructional league and he presently has 7 HR leading the Puerto Rican Winter League. He also has a .381 OBP with 13 SB. He will be given the opportunity to compete in Spring Training for a spot on the Major League team.

11:45 am Why would a high-priced free agent want to sign with and play for the Nationals this year?

11:57 am Baseball has as much parity as we've had in the last few decades. Clubs have proven that in recent years. For example, the Tampa Bay Rays went from the worst record in baseball in 2007 to the World Series in 2008. The Colorado Rockies went from 76 wins in 2006 to the World Series in 2007. The Chicago Cubs won 66 games in 2006, finishing in 6th place-- they went on to win the NL Central in 2007. Free Agents understand in today's market that clubs can improve rapidly. Also, baseball people with vision recogni

11:58 am What do you think our starting 5 will look like this year? Should we expect any additions to the starting rotation or any bulpen help, possibly a new closer?

12:04 pm We are developing a young core of potentially succesful starting pitchers including left-handers John Lannan and Scott Olsen and right-handers Collin Balester, Jordan Zimmermann, Shawn Hill and Shairon Martis. We are also currently having trade discussions with multiple clubs trying to acquire young starting pitching as well as pursuing starting pitching targets through non-tenders and free agency.

12:05 pm I know Ryan Zimmerman was hampered by the shoulder injury last year. Is he 100% for next season?

12:06 pm I spoke to Ryan Zimmerman last week. He is 100-percent and expects to come into Spring Training poised for a breakout season.

12:07 pm Thanks for being here today with me. Happy Holidays to you and your families... Scott Boras is on the phone, sorry gotta go.

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John O'Connor said...

JimBo didn't take my questions, which were (paraphrasing):

"How could you be so stupid not to offer arbitration to Redding?"

"Didn't somebody bother to figure out before the draft how much Crow would want? If so, then why didn't you draft somebody like Justin Smoak?"

Hendo said...

My J. D. Martin question (a non-bitter one -- I haven't had time to get bitter about Martin yet) went unanswered too. Then again I'm fairly confident I'm not on Bowden's A-list.

Will said...

According to ESPN, Teixeira is "close" to making a decision and is "seriously considering" Baltimore and Washington