Now, I could use metrics like wins above replacement or win shares or VORP to tell us who are the worst players on this historically awful excuse for a baseball team. But no, in this post I'm following my gut to create my list, as a fan, of the players I most hate to look at in a Washington Nationals uniform.
Let the countdown begin:
5. Cristian GuzmanYeah, yeah, he was our affirmative action all-star last year, and he hits over .300. Whatever. Three walks in 169 plate appearances is mind-blowingly dumb baseball, and he brings so little power that his overall offensive production is below average at best. His fielding range has been in steep decline, and he's now reached nearly Vidro-esque levels of immobility. Even floating on a ridiculous .377 BABIP, he's barely better than replacement. And, this is a guy who will by the end of next year have been paid $32 million dollars by this team, more than any other player in Nationals history and 45 times more than the difference between Aaron Crow's final offer and the team's. And we gave up a draft pick to sign him back in 2004, a pick that became Brian Duensing, who's looking like another serviceable (if totally vanilla) Minnesota pitcher. Cristian Guzman stinks.
4. Dmitri YoungFor the love of Pete, what on earth is that whale still doing on a major league roster? You know he's still getting $5 million a year from this team? Even in his one affirmative action all-star season, he gave back nearly half his value at the plate with his trained black bear-like agility at first base. Remember when we thought he was going to be the team leader who would help coach young guys like Elijah Dukes? What a joke. Arguably the worst single example of delusional excess of the ex-Red-loving, DH-stock-piling Bowden years.
3. Julian TavarezI'm keeping it to one relief pitcher only, and it's Tavarez. Like most of our bullsh*tpen, he can't find the strikezone with a map, he's slow on the mound, and he gives up runs by the bushel. He's also a jerk. No beer goggles can make this guy watchable.
2. Scott OlsenI've gone on at length about Olsen, so I'll just hit the high points. When he's not getting decked by teammates, tasered by cops, or lighting up a cigarette in the clubhouse, all he does is get rocked.
1. Anderson HernandezGiven that we gave up next to nothing of value to get him and his near league-minimum salary, it's taken some doing for ol' AHern to earn his way into this position. He can't hit, but he bats lead-off. He was supposed to be a good fielder, but he's constantly in brain lock, whether he's forgetting to cover second base on a steal, forgetting to cover first on a bunt, covering first but letting the throw sail past him inexplicably, failing to even attempt a throw on a critical double play, booting a lazy roller... all plays that cost the team runs. On a team of bad news bears, Anderson Hernandez is the baddest news of them all.