A Prince Leads Us to WAR

January 6, 2012

There have been quite a few articles on why the Nats should or should sign Prince Fielder. Buster Olney has a rather long and detailed opinion article (ESPN Insider) which brings up some really good points. I’m not gonna go over most of it, but a few highlights are:

  • Between the Prince and Gio additions, they’d have a very good rotation and a top lineup
  • Ryan Zimmerman wouldn’t be able to move to first, and the Nats brass may envision him there
  • Fielder is not a good, um, fielder, and won’t be getting better as he ages

Those are important things to keep in mind, but the best article I’ve seen recently on the subject is on Fangraphs, written by Steve Slowinski (and it’s free!). He starts by talking about the Nationals current capability, saying that without Fielder, they “have the potential to be a mid-80s win team.” With the maturation of younger players and the addition of Gonzalez, it shouldn’t be hard to envision 4 or 5 more wins. He then did some quick math and saw that if the Nats signed Fielder they’d turn into a 91-ish win team, but he believes that the optimistic individual projections he used are a little unrealistic, and a win total in the high-80s is much more likely. Still, this could get you into the playoffs… this isn’t stuff we haven’t heard in the last few weeks. But that’s not what interested me about his article.

Rather, it was his analysis of what they might miss with this deal.

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