The 2011 regular season is in the books, having concluded with one of the most dramatic one-night-only shows in pennant race history. The Nationals, of course, were nowhere near that, flying back from Florida as the Red Sox, Rays, Cardinals and Braves tangled for their playoff lives.
But they had plenty to feel good about as they left Sun Life Stadium with an 80-81 record, the second-best since they moved to Washington in 2005. As players went their separate ways yesterday, many were talking about raised expectations for 2012, and the Nationals will reconvene in Viera, Fla., next February with legitimate visions of winning.
We'll talk about all that in the coming days and months. For the next few days, though, we'll look back on the season that was in 2011. And we'll start today with our annual season-ending reader poll.
I've compiled a list of candidates for team awards (MVP, pitcher of the year, rookie of the year), and put together some of the suggestions you gave yesterday for winners in other categories. Weigh in with your votes below, and I'll add my choices later today. And in the comments section, let me know why you voted the way you did.