The 2012 season was a colossal disappointment for the Nationals. Injury after injury after injury accounted for a sub .500 record and finishing 24 games back of National League East winning Atlanta. Their 4.5 runs per game ranked 7th, and their 4.7 runs per game allowed ranked 12th, which was the biggest surprise considering the roster. 2013 Losses by WAR: 1.4 WAR SP Chien-Ming Wang 0.4 WAR RF Xavier Nady 2013 Additions by WAR: 0.6 WAR SP Kyle Davies (Free Agent) -0.1 WAR MR Brian Bruney (Free Agent) -1.6 WAR SP Brad Bergeson (Free Agent) Offseason Analysis: The pitching staff was a bit of a mess last year and it looks like they tried to address it. Unfortunately, the 3 arms they added are nowhere near the quality of talent they had in Chien-Ming Wang, who was signed for a very favorable contract in Kansas City. Overall it was a very quiet offseason in Washington and it looks like they really didn't address their concerns very well. Offense: This offense is another year older, which here in Washington is a good thing. Jayson Werth is the veteran, but is still only 33. And then you have Zimmerman, Espinosa, Harper, Ramos, Desmond and Morse and this is a really good looking lineup. Although they don't have a lot of speed, their are currently 6 guys in this lineup with 7 overall Power and should hit their fair share of Homeruns. The guy I will watch most in this lineup though is 1B Chris Marrero. This is a guy they accidentally let slip to minor league free agency, but thought highly enough of him that they resigned him at a $7.2 million over 3 years deal. He will probably get his fair share of at bats with a banged up Adam Laroche still on the squad. Pitching: The rotation is one of the best you will see in baseball. Im amazed how poorly they pitched last year, but I think they put it together this year. Strasburg, Zimmerman, Jackson and Gonzalez is a very good front 4, and all have or more. The 5th spot is up for grabs, but boy.. Wang would have been a great addition here. I do expect either Davies or Bergeson to attempt to hold this down until John Lannan comes off the DL. The bullpen outside of CL Drew Storen is a big question mark. Tyler Clippard had some injury troubles last year, but ratings wise, does not look like the pitcher I thought he should be. Henry Rodriguez was serviceable for them with a 108 ERA+ but they really don't have anyone I would trust in the 7th or 8th innings at this point. Finances: The Nationals are certainly up there in payroll at a hefty $117 million. They do have some wiggle room though, but not much. Last season, they only earned $118 million and they really need to figure out some things here. Right now they are priced at the 2nd highest in the league for tickets. Behind only Texas. Yes, the Nationals are charging more than Boston and New York. It's not working for them either. Their fan interest is one of the lowest in the leagues, and they drew the 2nd lowest amount of fans to only the Reds. This is not a recipe for financial success. Thankfully, they lose about $15 million in payroll off the books at the end of the year. That Werth contract is still an ugly one. Minor Leagues: Their system is a mess, which can be expected with so much young talent at the big league level. Thier #1 prospect SP Marcos Mendoza is still a ways off, probably 2 years, so he wont help much. Outside of Mendoza, they don't have any other prospects worth mentioning. Outlook: I really like this club a lot. I love their rotation, the lineup is solid and they are still very young. They have some very good hitters and should be dangerous 1-6. All of their starters have the potential to win at least 12 games, and Strasburg has Cy Young potential. Obviously the bullpen is a big question mark and if @knighnoles micromanages enough here, I think he can make it work. They also have to fix their finances in a big way. Lower ticket prices and get fans in the seats. And then hopefully the team can win on the field. As long as injuries stay away, this should be a very competitive ballclub. They won't beat Atlanta, but they will keep it close all year. Prediction: 90-72 (2nd Place) Wildcard berth.