Congrats 2014 NL East Champions – Washington Nationals!

Photo by PoPville flickr user wolfkann

YES!!! Let’s keep it going through October. Congrats Nats!

From an email:

“The Washington Nationals released the following statement this evening after clinching the NL East Division Championship:

“We are so proud of this organization,” said Ted Lerner, Managing Principal Owner of the Washington Nationals. “Watching them clinch their second NL East Division Championship in three years means so much to our fans, our city and our family. Mike Rizzo and Matt Williams should be commended for building and leading a championship club. Tonight, we celebrate this milestone but realize that there is still work to do and goals to accomplish. We are looking forward to the possibilities that lie ahead.”

22 Comment

  • What’s next for the Nationals? I have tickets for a mets game next week… what’s at stake? Or will they be phoning it in? (I don’t know how the baseball season is structured.)

    • They are essentially playing for the #1 seed in the playoffs which means they will have home field advantage against the Wild Card team (play-in game between Pirates and Giants as of today). They SHOULD be giving it 110% effort because they do not want to play the Cardinals in the first round.

    • palisades

      They’ll be taking it easy yes, but also playing for home field advantage in the playoffs. So the remaining games will still matter to them.

    • Now they need to try and get home field advantage. You don’t want them to phone it in but at the same time you don’t want them to suffer from injuries.

    • The only difference will be they might be resting their star players more to reduce risk of injury, but as others have stated it’s still a close race for the #1 seed. The last thing we want to do is play the Cardinals (which happens if we are not the #1 seed).

  • They will still be playing hard because if they have the best record in the National League, they will only have to play the wild card team in the first round of the playoffs (and they will have homefield advantage). If they have the second best record, then they play a much tougher team in the first round of the playoffs (although they will still start the series at home).

    Right now they are just slightly ahead of the Dodgers for the best record in the NL. If they secure it, their path to the World Series is much easier. So they’ll still be playing to win. Plus Tuesday is their first game back in DC since clinching the NL East, so should be fun. I’ll be there (the guy in the red hat with the W on it).

    • Another big reason for wanting the #1 seed: the wild card team we would be playing will presumably burn their #1 starter in that game, so we would likely only see their ace once in the NLDS if it went 5 games. And the impact of a shut down starting pitcher is much more magnified in a 5 game series than the 7 games of the NLCS (an “automatic” starter like Kershaw can only account for 2/5 of the games as opposed to 2/7 unless they go a very short rest, which tends to make starters less “automatic”)

      • That’s a really good point, because the two wild card teams have to play a one game match up, the winner will likely not just have burned his best starter, but also maybe beat up the rest of the team in a tough game. It gives the team playing the wild card a chance to get a jump start on the series.

  • Another dumb newbie question… If there are two leagues, and the world series is between those two leagues, and we’re the NL champion… what happens between now and the world series? And why?

    • They’re the NL East champions right now. There will be NL West and NL Central champions as well, plus two NL Wild Card teams. The winner of the one-game playoff between the two wild card teams will join the three division champions in a 4-team tournament to see who goes to the world series.

    • We are the NL East champions. There are still 2 other divisions in the National League. To make it a even 4 teams (for play off purposes) the two national league runner ups (by total wins across all divisions) play in a one game play off.

      The wild card winner and the 3 division winners play in a 2 round single elimination tournament for the over all winner of the National League. The same thing happens in the American League as well. Those two league winners go on to play in the world series.

  • And let me tell you, the atmosphere at Nats Park is fun. If you didn’t go to any games in 2012, do yourself a favor and try to get to the park with the time that’s left. The whole building feels like it’s shaking. It reminds me of RFK back in the Joe Gibb years, just a good time.

  • I loved the Natitude in the locker room after the win. Watching the Nats pour beer on both FP and Lerner was hilarious.

    • I really liked Harper running around the clubhouse in a DCFD helmet with his number on it after the clinch. The department had given it to him as a present and he carried it down to Atlanta to wear during the celebration when they clinched. Glad to see a team that plays in DC represent DC institutions.

    • I think they spilled more beer on each other and on MASN Dan than they drank.

      They still do want to try to get the #1 seed in the league, but I read that Blake Treinen is starting tonight–isn’t he normally a reliever? They may be resting their stars somewhat, but as others have said, they shouldn’t be slacking.

  • Congrats, Nationals. Go Cardinals! See you in October?

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