Washington Nationals: ESPN’s Karl Ravech discusses the postseason and Mets

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - FEBRUARY 05: A view of the logo during ESPN The Party on February 5, 2016 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images for ESPN)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - FEBRUARY 05: A view of the logo during ESPN The Party on February 5, 2016 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images for ESPN) /

With the Washington Nationals set to face the New York Mets on Sunday Night Baseball this weekend, we had a chance to chat with ESPN’s Karl Ravech.

With one of the deepest rosters in baseball, the Washington Nationals are a popular pick to go on a deep postseason run, possibly even making it to the World Series. Among those who picked the Nats to make it to their first ever World Series is ESPN’s Karl Ravech.

Despite having an immensely talented team, some believe that the Nats will fail to do damage in the postseason because of their unfortunate history in the playoffs. As Ravech put it, they have a “hole in their resume”. However, he also went on to say that if the Cubs and Red Sox can end century-long World Series droughts, the Nats can win a postseason round.

Part of why Ravech believes that this is the year the Nats finally make a deep postseason run is because of their trio of late-inning relievers. In previous years, the Nats have counted on relievers with little or no experience, which has been detrimental.

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Now, the Nats have a lethal trio of Brandon Kintzler, Ryan Madson, and Sean Doolittle. However, Ravech did not rule out Mike Rizzo possibly acquiring a middle reliever at the trade deadline.

In addition to a reliable relief corps, the Nats also have one of the best players in the league in Bryce Harper. He has gotten off to a terrific start, but this could be his final year in DC.

Despite the unorthodox free agent market from this past offseason, Ravech believes that Harper can still sign a record-breaking deal. After all, he is only 25 years old.

As for what Harper’s contract may look like, Ravech predicted that he would make between $275 and 350 million. He also went on to list the Nationals, Phillies, Dodgers, and Yankees as potential suitors. Even though the Yankees recently acquired Giancarlo Stanton, Ravech believes that they could make a trade to clear payroll for Harper.

Along with having one of the top position players in Harper, the Nats also have one of the top starting pitchers in Stephen Strasburg.

Ravech was very complimentary of Strasburg, even stating that his debut was the most exciting one for him in his 25 years at ESPN. The general consensus is that Strasburg has not lived up to expectations, but Ravech believes that he can put himself on the shortlist of elite starting pitchers.

Last year, Strasburg was arguably the best pitcher in the league throughout the second half and postseason. The Nats ultimately did not achieve their goals, but he did everything he was supposed to do.

More on Strasburg, along with the entire interview, can be found here:

Finally, Ravech predicts that the Mets will give the Nats a run for their money, possibly making the postseason as a Wild Card team, but the Nats will come out on top.

The Mets are a talented bunch, but rely on injury-prone players, such as Yoenis Cespedes and Noah Syndergaard, as well as older players, such as Todd Frazier and Adrian Gonzalez.

Next: Early trends show a new offensive approach for the Nats

This weekend, the Nats will take on the Mets in an intense early-season matchup on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell, preceded by Baseball Tonight: Sunday Night Countdown presented by Chevrolet. We thank Karl Ravech for his time and congratulate him on 25 great years at ESPN.