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They're too tough, they wouldn't fall
2008-08-29 19:40
by Bob Timmermann

The Washington Nationals continue to do their impression of Captain Jacoby, the master of the "La Paloma." They've been shot and mortally wounded and yet they stay alive.

The Nats will try to stave off elimination tonight at home against Atlanta. One loss and they're finally done. But I hope they at least manage to get the Maltese Falcon to Sam Spade.

Odalis Perez pitches for the Nats to save their season against Jorge Campillo.

Some people live for pennant races. Others just live to watch teams get mathematically eliminated.

UPDATE - The Brewers won their 78th game tonight to eliminate the Nats from wild card contention.

However, the Nats held on to win 7-3 tonight against Atlanta to keep their faint NL East hopes alive.

They would need:

  1. the Mets to lose every game they play except two of their remaining five against the Marlins.
  2. the Phillies to sweep a 3-game series at New York and then lose five of their remaining six against the Marlins and then lose every other game.
  3. the Marlins would have to finish the season by going 7-20 with the seven wins coming against the Mets and Phillies as mentioned (8-19 or 9-18 might work too.).
  4. the Braves would have to win no more than 3 of their 6 games scheduled against the Rockies and Astros while winning all their games against the Mets, Phillies, and Marlins, while losing all their games to the Nationals.
  5. the Nationals would have to win every remaining game.

UPDATE 2 - Saturday night, the Nats stayed alive with a 9-8 win over the Braves. 

The Marlins beat the Mets 4-3 and the Phillies beat the Cubs 5-2.  

So... The Nats can get no better than a tie for first. The Phillies would have to sweep the Mets in New York, but win no other games. The Mets would have to win two of their remaining four games with the Marlins, but no others. The Marlins would win eight games (six against the Phillies and two against the Mets, but no others) and the Braves would have to win no more than 3 of 6 against Houston and Atlanta, but win all other games. The Nats cannot lose again.

Time is getting short for America's Team. There could be other permutations that would keep the Nats alive, but I like the multiteam tie.

In a far simpler scenario, Seattle will be eliminated with a loss to Cleveland or a Boston win.

2008-08-29 20:16:23
1.   dan310
I'll lay you 10,000-to-one. 100,000,000-to-one if you want to go for the Nat's-Mellencamp quiniela.
2008-08-29 20:45:39
2.   Travis08
I think you mean that the Phillies need to lose five of their remaining six against the Marlins. Also the Marlins could go 8-19 (or 9-18, with the Nationals winning the playoff).
2008-08-30 08:48:15
3.   Woden325
Are you going to put the "So Long and Thanks for Playing" list back in the sidebar this year, Bob?
2008-08-30 09:02:03
4.   Ember Nickel
I liked your allusion to the Death Star in the post below. Deep down inside the Nats are just lovable little* Wookies that nevertheless fend off the Imperial Army.


2008-08-30 10:44:34
5.   Bob Timmermann
I believe the Nats would be killed off this afternoon if the Phillies beat the Cubs.
2008-08-30 13:55:15
6.   xaphor
Bob, I'm all aboard with this implication that the NL East title is a fake.
2008-08-30 22:55:11
7.   Gagne55
5 Since the Marlins have a margin of two games besides the must wins over New York and Philly, they could conceivably win all six against Philly rather than 5/6. So Washington lives.
2008-08-30 22:59:06
8.   Gagne55
Oops. There was an update. I is idiot.

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