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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

It's On!

The Nationals sure have had a busy couple of weeks. Seems as though some of the trades the club made at the beginning of the month have come back to haunt them a bit.

We were not happy when the Nationals acquired outfielder Elijah Dukes. His previous actions and run ins with the law had us worried that the change Jim Bowden promised Dukes would make was unlikely. Now, just two weeks after the trade was announced, Dukes finds himself in hot water again. The situation is actually quite similar. A former flame has accused Dukes of domestic violence and has requested a restraining order. According to Amanda Reese, who says she dated Dukes from August to October, Dukes sent her a number of threatening text messages. Sounds pretty familiar huh? Remember the message he sent his soon to be ex-wife, "you dead dawg." Apparently the Nationals have set up a support system to keep Dukes in-line. He will live with Barry Larkin until Spring Training. Perhaps an easier fix would be to take away his cell phone? Of course the Nats say they didn't know about this situation, that it happened before the trade, and that since he has been with the club, Dukes has been cooperative. Regardless I'm sensing a theme, its pretty obvious that the club is going to have their work cut out for them on this one.

In addition, with the release of the Mitchell Report, the Nats found the name of their new catcher Paul Lo Duca* on the list. President Stan Kasten made a few comments about the report yesterday. He would not specifically name Lo Duca* or Nook Logan, but it was pretty clear that the Nationals didn't know about Lo Duca's* steroid use when they acquired him. Kasten made it clear that talking about steroid use is a personal decision left up to the player. We commend those players like former Nat Gary Bennett and the O's Brian Roberts for being honest about their usage. Wonder when or if Lo Duca* will say anything, my guess is no...

The Nationals have also announced their official 2008 schedule today. Still no word on Spring Training. President Bush has been invited to throw the first pitch at the new stadium. Sadly, there will be no baseball in the nation's capitol on the 4th of July. The 2008 schedule includes an away game in Cincinnati on July 4. What's a Fourth of July celebration in DC without a baseball game? We can't imagine the Nats passing on a sell-out game opportunity in the new stadium.

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