As The Season Ends, So Does The NQ


Oh, Buddha. Here it is. Finally. The end of the line…

I am, of course, talking about the Washington Nationals 2015 season– and the Nationals Inquisition as well, but we’ll get to that weeping chestnut in a bit. First, let’s talk this season and put a nail in it’s coffin if you will, although, if you have been paying attention to this blog all season, the Nats were being laid to rest back in April.

I did one blog post, JUST ONE back around 20 games into the season and it told the dreadful, horrid, Blair Witch-style tale that would finally eventually become the story of the 2015 Nats. Go ahead, read it. I’ll wait. It’s all there. The bullpen from H-E-Double Hockey Stick. The pimple-faced Matt Williams. The Great Architect of Organizational Disaster, Mike Rizzo makes an appearance too. Just one blog post, back in April, completely sums up the clustermuck that the Nats season was. One blog post to rule them all– mic drop. Helluva job. I will take this time to pat myself on the back shamelessly.

It’s the last blog post you’ll ever read here so I can get away with it.

So where do the Nats go from here? They fired Williams and the coaching staff. They pretty much have succumbed to the fact that Ian Desmond, Doug Fister and Jordan Zimmermann will not be donning the uniform again. Their bullpen is in shambles (they will be keeping Papelbon). Their offense still can’t really hit when they need to. On the horizon they will be soon need to start worrying about contracts of guys like Stephen Strasburg (I see him going West Coast) and more importantly, the phenomenal Bryce Harper (He wants to be a part of it, New York, New York…). They need to find a new manager and coaching staff. And of course, Mike Rizzo is still GM/Team President.

It’s a goddamned mess. This team should be preparing for the Dodgers. Instead they are at home watching the Astros and the Cubs while wondering how in the hell Michael Morse could have possibly gotten a World Series ring before any of them in Nats shirt. If they don’t have a Mike Rizzo voodoo doll by now, they should. I just can’t see them going any further than they have as long as Rizzo is making the decisions. Say what you want about his drafting, trading and player evaluating, they’ve lead us to what we have now: just two division titles and a whole lot of heartbreak– and Nyjer Morgan. He also gave us the gift of Plush. Remember that.

But you know, its not my problem anymore. I’m done. This is the last blog post on the NQ. I’ve been really scarce the past two seasons for various reasons. Some reasons that sucked and another that just blows the mind. The winds are blowing me elsewhere to other challenges. Life does not expand without change….that is why I am selling my staff, selling my wife, house and kids and then going to illegally live in a driftwood box on a sand dune somewhere between Avon and Frisco, NC and search for UFOs.

It might seem an odd life choice, but it certainly has its perks over writing about players beards, their baffling play and a whole other assortment of weirdness that comes with blogging this team from Pittsburgh to Southern Florida over the past four or five years. I’ve had the best of times with this blog, met some incredible people and have done things a standard fan generally doesn’t get to do. I have no regrets– except maybe not including more Monty Python references which was the original plan.

This blog wasn’t the best and it certainly wasn’t the worst. But it was a helluva ride and as my hero Dr. Thompson once said, “You buy the ticket, you take the ride.” And ride we did.

I want to shout out and give thanks to the three or four people who actually read this blog, friends and family who put up with it, Dr. W, The Wiz, Rich The Mets Fan, Wily Mo Pena for not hitting me with his car, countless others and of course, most of all, the Washington Nationals. I’ve been married to this team as long as I have been married to my wife. Ten years. Incredible.

Oh, before I forget, someone wanted me to post a beachballish pic. Sorry it’s not new, but I traded my photoshop for a magic staff that should help me call in aliens. I’m not sure how it works or if at all. It just looks like someone duct taped a carrot to a damn selfie stick.

Perhaps I’ll see you at Nats Park. Or on the beach. Or maybe not. If I’m not in either place it is probably safe to assume I’ve been abducted. If so, I promise to spread the Nats faith to the universe.

This is DangerNat, the last survivor of the Nostromo, signing off.

(Editor’s Note: I will be on Twitter still offering my occasional valuable insight that no one cares about. It is still: @natsnq )

Blogging Dirty In 2015– One Last Time


And we are back– sort of.

It’s been pretty much over a year since I last graced the pages of this blog with my “rapist wit” and musty insight into the Washington Nationals Baseball Club of Washington D.C. I wish I could interest you in stories of how I drowned all my staff and made a run for it to a tropical island where I spent the past year making love to exotic women and drinking with scorpions, but alas, it would be a lie. Life can be a she-devil and she certainly has held my gonads to the fire this past year, so much so I decided I had to take a break and sort of reinsert myself into The Matrix of just being a fan again without having to worry about blog.

I have to admit: I was getting a little tired of it too. I put a lot into this little cybernetic burg and I accomplished a lot. I got to blog from the Nats Park press box, got to meet some players, almost got run over by Wily Mo Pena, got yelled at by both Jordan Zimmermann and Jayson Werth, spent a month in Florida hunting squirrels, went to countless games, met countless people, been called every dirty thing under the sun, learned 320 reasons you should never tuck your jersey into your jacked up pants and drank a lot of beer. Really, what more could have I asked for from what began as just a little joke venture almost six years ago? I loved every moment on the way.

It was that love and the fact I felt like I was neglecting my own child that I decided to jump start the blog again, to give it another whirl– but only for a little while. I know you are all crushed and still in mourning over losing Stephen Colbert, John Stewart and David Letterman to retirement of their respective shows this year, so it pains me to add to your misery by saying I will be officially retiring from the NQ after the last out of the 2015 season. This blog has had one hell of a run, but if I feel if I can’t put everything I have into the blog and team I love, then I would much rather it be put out to stud.

The blog. Not the team. I’m sure the Nats are bred to the finest stock already.

I won’t be able to update everyday, but I will when I can, when something either awesome or stupefying happens and I will make sure my staff and I do our best to give you one last go. My apprentice, Dr. W, will be leaving for Viera tomorrow to do a little blog work and take in some Spring Training action, so hopefully we’ll have some gravy in the next few days. We’ll probably kick this thing off strong around Opening Day so keep checking back.

So “Once more into the fray, into the last good fight I’ll ever know…”, dear friends– said someone a whole lot more popular than I. See you again soon.


A State Of The Blog Whatever


Alright. The time has come. I am going to bare my ass to you all, my faithful ternion. For the past five years you have stuck with me, read my dribble and at least in my mind propelled this blog to the level of toilet porn which is farther than I ever thought it would ever reach.

You have probably noticed an extreme drop off of content on this blog over the past six or seven months. No, your old pal DangerNat hasn’t lost interest in the team or sport and no this isn’t some blog signing off post. It is just awhile back life sort of caught up with me. I was tired, put down, laid on, laid off and got myself into a rut. My wife started frequenting seedy bars and underground Chip and Dale joints while my kids started calling me by my first name and became Chipper Jones fans. Actually I am kidding about those last two parts, but my family life was suffering a bit I admit so perhaps you can understand that writing about rich athletes facial hair, bitchings and strangeness wasn’t really on the top of my list.

Deep depression set in. I was taking special Pez candies prescribed by my doctor and seeing strange, balding figures who where suffering their own midlife crisis and buying Mini-Coopers while trying to help me. It is like I became the poster love child to Zack Greinke and Ladycakes. Needless to say, I needed to get my shit together and thankfully I have or at least I am on the path to.

So I have taken the steps to begin a quest to become a mortician. That quest starts this coming Saturday (July 13th) as I start a position as a funeral assistant. Please, wish me luck.

That being said, I will be unable to do a whole bunch on the blog so sadly, there will not be an uptick in content, but there WILL be content. Just more spaced out and a little more selective. Don’t worry, if you like crap, there will still be crap too, but just selective crap. I have been working with my apprentice, Dr. W, who has been learning the ropes and growing by leaps and bounds. I am hoping (praying) he will continue to be interested in this sort of “all guts, no glory” type of blogging and help keep this blog alive by putting out more content. I haven’t given him a key to the apartment yet, but he is getting close.

I just thought you’d like to know. I sort of owe it to you. I also owe it to my staff and the blog itself which has been like a neglected baby the past few months and I’ve felt bad about it. I haven’t changed its diapers or anything.

So now you are all caught up.

And I am not kidding about the mortician part.

Bringing The Nats To The Nat-less

I just wanted to let you know the Nationals Inquisition will be on vacation for a couple weeks.

I’ve locked up all my staff in their cages, grabbed a couple Hunter S. Thompson novels, a case of PBR and my Nats cap and have struck out for Colorado. I’ve never been that far out West in barbaric and Nat-less America and the urge for adventure has grown just too great to ignore.

It all seems ill-timed considering the team is doing incredible things and are on the verge of winning a place in the playoffs and maybe even the whole damn division enchilada. Part of me feels like I should be putting more time into the blog, but I’ve had some life experiences these past few months that tell me I’ve got to do something like this.

Not completely sure when I’ll jump back on the blog. Probably around Sept. 11th-ish I am hoping. I don’t plan on taking a computer with me. I’d like to be completely off the grid, but may be a little active on Twitter or get a rare post in if I can find a computer and Internet signal. Until the NQ’s full return there are plenty of other Nats blogs to wet your whistle and keep you posted. Most of those are located on our right side bar.

So godspeed, Nats fans. I will bring the faith to the unfaithful while I am out West and will be keeping tabs on the Army of the Potomac and their movements. Natitude, my friends. Go hard.


Jack Daniels Wants To Sue Us– But At Least They Like Baseball Too

I am a simple blogger with simple pleasures. It doesn’t take a whole lot to make me happy. My obsessions include things like Nats baseball, Pabst Blue Ribbon, Liverpool and the Deadliest Catch. Also among my obsessions is Jack Daniels whiskey. I love Jack Daniels, love it. Even if they don’t love me or this blog–

I got a letter from the Jack Daniels company via UPS this week asking me to discontinue the Bryce Harper Black Label T-shirts. They printed the letter on some really nifty Jack Daniels paper stock and were most polite in explaining to me that if I don’t take them off the site they will sue my dumbass. In fact, a lot more polite than I ever thought when encountering this sort of thing. From Jack Daniel’s Properties Inc.:

…We are thrilled that you like our product– we are baseball fans as well. However, as I’m certain you can appreciate, under trademark laws…

I like how they try to butter me up using baseball as a connection point as if they aren’t some mighty giant with sledgehammer in hand staring down at me.

…To help us resolve this matter, we simply request that once the current inventory of shirts are used up or sold, use of this particular design will be discontinued. By doing so you will help us ensure that the brand will mean as much to future generations as it does today…

I’m flattered that they think this little Nats blog will completely erase the value of the Jack Daniels label. Really, the power I hold in my keyboard– or the power they want me to think I have before they squash me into oblivion.

I would like nothing better to take on a whiskey giant and have strange men in ten gallon hats and Rollie Fingers mustaches throwing bricks through my windows late at night buuuuut I have too much respect for this particular brand of Americana so I have indeed taken the Bryce Harper Black Label shirts off the site and have had them completely discontinued as they have asked.

I’ve got a few other shirt designs flying around in my mind and in time I will get to them, but I will not be doing a similar shirt in the future. So for all of you who were fortunate to purchase one of the shirts (and there were a bunch of you) thank you for the support and congratulations, you now have a collector’s item. For those of you who missed out– I don’t know what was wrong with you because these shirts were pretty damn cool and of good quality.

R.I.P Bryce Harper Black Label T-Shirts 2012-2012.

And Now For Something Completely Different…

Alright, I figure you are all honest with me, so I will be honest with you–

You might have noticed a lack of updates recently on the blog and that the hedges need to be trimmed and the cobwebs wiped off. My apologies to the six or seven people who actually read this blog daily. I don’t mean to leave you out in the cold. But, your old pal DangerNat has been going through some things since coming back from Viera and it has been hard to get on the blog lately. Spending time with family, new job, getting ready for several events coming up, being kind of tired of baseball…

Yeah. You heard right. Being tired of baseball. Already. It is odd. Usually Spring Training is the time I am going hot and I can’t get rid of the baseball bug, but for some reason I came back from Viera sort of dreading the huge marathon that is coming up. Literally, the season preview issue of Sports Illustrated is on my desk, untouched and sitting there looking like a black mamba. I have files piling up at headquarters on Nats stuff, but every time I reach out to grab one I feel like I am being Force choked by Darth Vader. My loyal staff of apes and degenerates continue to work tirelessly like worker bees who know that sooner or later a heavy wind is going to blow the hive right off the branch.

Let me tell you a blogging secret. Most bloggers will admit this is the truth if you corner them with pitchfork and torch: all blogger’s look forward to the day we can go back to being “just fans.” We look forward to the days of not bringing cameras, notepads, gadgets and gizmos to the Park and not having to be as observant as a hawk about everything around us in case a story breaks or something happens. I admit, we admit, it is tiring at times and sort of takes some of the fun out of the game.

But for whatever reasons be it some of us want to break into journalism, some of us want to make a name for ourselves, some of us thought this blogging thing might be fun or we just wanted to drink and blog– we blog. We blog for you, we blog for us, we blog for our team.

I’ve been questioning my reasons lately and I’ve been taking a look at the blog to see if it has stayed true to itself from its original origins nearly over five years ago. To be honest, it sort of strayed. I started this blog as a reason to grab some brew and just talk baseball like a fan. Overtime it sort of turned into a whole new beast where I felt if it didn’t have fresh daily content, I felt I’d let my avid seven readers down and that began to hang on me to the point maybe this just wasn’t as fun anymore.

Let me just say, this isn’t meant to be a sob piece (too late) and this posting is meant more for me than for you really. The Nationals Inquisition isn’t going anywhere. I’m not giving up the blog and retiring it. Maybe one day, but not now. No, I am going to keep plugging along at my own pace and see if I can rediscover the blundering magic that made me want to do this in the first place. I want to take back control of the beast. I want to un-Beast Mode it.

So I appreciate you tolerating my drama, I appreciate you hanging around and I appreciate your patience as I work through some things. I’m going to start pumping out the material again and making this blog feel loved, but I’m going to do it on my own terms.

I’m going to have fun again– even if I have to dress in a bacon suit and shoot fireworks off while I blog to do it.

Strasburg Tries To Blow It By, Guy Who Got Shot Twice In Face Saves NQ

I confess: I’ve been depressed.

It has been hard getting back onto the blogging horse after our short stint in Viera. After being in the thick of it and then having to come back and rely on Youtube videos and second hand accounts, it sort of crushes a man’s soul and makes him question why he deals with all this sh*t to begin with. Seriously, it got so bad I actually sat down and was entertained by Beverly Hills Cop III for awhile. Beverly Hills Cop III– horrible.

Fortunately I was saved by Mike last night at Durty Nelly’s bar. Mike is a retired ex-cop who was shot eight times in the line of duty (including twice in the face) who said something last night that just touched my soul and put everything in perspective. He said: “My dick was harder than Japanese arithmetic.”

And so here we are…

Stephen Strasburg and the Nationals squared off against the Atlanta Braves last night in a Spring Training game under the lights and though the result didn’t end in their favor (Nats lost 6-5 in a hard battle), perhaps the most important lesson learned was by Strasburg who found something just as hard as Japanese arithmetic: getting over his own cockiness and pride.

The Burg gave up two home runs last night, the first in the first inning against Dan Uggla which put the Nats in a 2-0 hole. Uggla is comparable to a neanderthal so it was a bit shocking to see him get the best of Strasburg who is usually a lot smarter than to just plug a fastball down the middle to a fastball hitter, but that is what Strasburg did and later he admitted he was foolish because all he wanted to do was “blow it right by him.” In fact, he down right admits he was just throwing the ball rather than pitching. Nationals Journal:

“My arm feels great, so I’m almost over-throwing because it feels so good,” Strasburg said. “That’s one thing that I have to take a step back and remember what I learned from last year. You have to go out there and pitch. You can’t just throw it by guys.”

I’ve already had a few people ask me if I am “concerned” with the runs Strasburg has been giving up this Spring Training. Absolutely not. It is Spring Freaking Training. Strasburg and the team seem to know what is up and I can’t think of a better place to get those butterflies and jitters ironed out. Stras just has to become one with the mound again and check that cockiness at the door. The scorching Florida sun should make him more than humble to his craft by the time Opening Day hits. Absolutely no worries. This guy is still the stud we know him to be and is still as good as advertised.

There, that first blog post back wasn’t so hard. Thanks, Mike!

–In Brief Relief

–Bryce Harper Goes GQ – Nationals top offensive prospect Bryce Harper will be in the April issue of GQ Magazine and he has some incredibly choice beef quotes and photos. It should make the Nationals totally elated. He went from Twitter to GQ magazine. The kid certainly knows how to leap to larger platforms.

–Black Label Shirts On Hold – The NQ released several new items in our online store including a Black Label Bryce Harper shirt. The shirt actually was just starting to sell like hotcakes, but then Cafepress pulled it because of some problems they had with it. Everyone who ordered one should still get it, but any new orders will be pending or put on hold until we can can work out this mess. I should be on the phone with the company today or tomorrow. Thank you for your patience.

– Special Thanks – To all those who made our brief, but wonderful stay in Viera, well, wonderful. Thanks to Viera, Cocoa Beach and Indiatlantic for being generous hosts. Great thanks to Rich The Mets Fan and Susie for putting us up. Thanks to OddNat, Wiz, Barbara from Bunky’s, Space Coast Stadium and staff, Gio Gonzalez, the Nationals, Florida, America, Earth and anyone else I might have missed that had anything to do with our great time. Thank you, thank you.

King Gorzo Rears His Ugly Head Again

It is snowing. I can’t believe it is snowing. We are nearly 24 hours away from departing to Florida and Nationals Spring Training and it is snowing. It seems odd packing shorts, flowered shirts and rum into the bags as Old Man Winter takes a complete dump on us.

The Nationals played the first two Spring Training games of their 2012 campaign, both against the Houston Astros and both didn’t really end up like anyone expected. Houston beat the Nats on Saturday in Kissimmee 3-1. Bryce Harper recorded his first hit of the Spring against former Nationals pitcher Livan Hernandez. Then Stephen Strasburg took the mound on Sunday and the Nats got a Spring spanking 10-2. Much of that comes thanks in part to reliever Tom Gorzelanny who took over for Strasburg in the third-inning and proceeded to give up seven runs in one inning, including giving up two three-run home runs.

Manager Davey “Peanut Butter Mouth” Johnson acted cute and took responsibility for Gorzo’s less than craptacular outing, but that is just smokescreen for the fact that Gorzo absolutely sucks and is more than likely the weakest link in the bullpen. The guy just cannot not give up home runs. It was the same story last Spring Training: Gorzo entered the game and must have given up at least a two-run home run in nearly every one of his outings.

It is Spring Training, that is fine, pitchers work on things, but then it followed him into the regular season. Three Nationals pitchers gave up more than 12 home runs in 2011. One of those pitchers is gone (Livan Hernandez, 16), another is possibly on the way out (John Lannan, 15) and one, Gorzo, should probably be kicked to the curb as well (he gave up 15 in 2011).

So is the NQ making Gorzo the first player officially on the 2012 “Bum Watch?” Yes, we are. The amount of jacks he gives up is just unacceptable. His stats show the more games he is a part of the more home runs he gives up– which are a lot. His job is to support his starter, get guys out and get out of the inning, not give away free souvenirs.

As mentioned before, the NQ leaves for Viera Tuesday. We’ll be there ready to do the blog the next day so prepare yourselves for a big blitz on the blog sometime late Wednesday. Photos, bullet point recaps,stories, weirdness– the usual staples of our Spring Training coverage. It is that time of year again.