I'm killing time on a Friday afternoon on the web -- wow, so this is what people with 9-to-5 jobs do all day! -- so I thought I'd pass along a few thoughts and a couple worthwhile reads:
--Tyler Clippard really has been that good. Here are a few nuggets from his FanGraphs page: His fastball (averaging 91.8 mph) and changeup (averaging 81.1 mph) are both up a couple ticks from where they've been in past years, and among relievers, Clippard currently has thesecond-most valuablefastball and changeup in baseball. He's gotten more ground balls so far this year than he has in previous years, and he continues to get about twice as many swings and misses as the league average. That fastball-changeup combination is at the heart of it. And before this "Clip 'n' Save" thing goes too mainstream, I'd like to point out it was reader SteveRep44 who first coined the phrase in MASN's in-game Nationals chats.
--FanGraphs has a good look at the resurgence of one Austin Kearns, who's enjoying a resurgence for Manny Acta in Cleveland after a terrible final two seasons in Washington. Kearns is hitting .383/.431/.660 for the Indians, mostly playing left field.
--Matt Capps said he almost ended up in Chicago, but is happy with the decision he made to play for the Nationals.
--Just popped onto Lala.com, a cool music service that allows you to listen any album once, for free, all the way through, and was disappointed to see it's shutting down at the end of May. It doesn't really say why, only that it's shutting down May 31 and isn't accepting new users. Also kind of disappointed with the new John Butler Trio album, which is way poppier than most of their stuff.
--The esteemed Kristen Hudak (we call her Who Dat), my good friend and MASN colleague, is appearing on the online radio show Throwing Like a Girl on Sunday at 6:30 p.m. Check it out here on Sunday to hear her talking about all things Nats. I'm sure there'll be a podcast available later, too.
--Nationals Enquirer has an amusing look at how different the Nats looked a year ago today.