Washington Nationals: Time to start traditional Mendoza Line watch
In the waning weeks of the season, the Washington Nationals have two players who are trying to keep their batting average above the Mendoza Line.
If you are a Washington Nationals fan, this is not your first time tracking batting averages as the year comes to a close.
Fans have made a habit to seeing how low those average can go from the local players, hoping they do not fall below the dreaded Mendoza Line (.200). Or in the case of Jayson Werth in 2011, hoping the average falls lower and lower, in order to get cheap beer.
Werth did flirt with the Mendoza Line for a good while in 2011 as he did in 2015 and 2017 as well. In ’15 he was hitting below .200 as late as August 26th, before ultimately climbing above, to finish at .221.
He wasn’t the first Nationals player we searched through newspapers to find boxscores on. Cristian Guzman, from the inaugural Washington Nationals, really struggled to keep his head above water. On September 6th, he was hitting .196, though by season’s end, Guzman was up to .219.
We can’t forget Danny Espinosa. He was next in line to walk the tight rope between the two sides of the Mendoza Line. We won’t count 2013 when Espinosa hit .158 in just 44 games, not enough at-bats. Though in 2016 he teetered back and forth before finally resting on .209.
This brings us to the current year, where a duo of Nationals are inching their way in the wrong direction as far as good averages are concerned.
While Michael Taylor and Carter Kieboom hover around the Mendoza Line, they too haven’t had enough at-bats to really justify “the watch”.
Asdrubal Cabrera does.
Thirteen games into the season, Cabrera was hitting .341. He has seen his average steadily decline ever since. After an 0-3 last night, he is down to .218. A long ways from the .323 Cabrera tallied in his time with the Nationals last year.
Joining Cabrera on the watch list is Adam Eaton. A seven game hitting streak out of the gate for Eaton put him on a great trajectory. Down hill sense. Currently in a 2-19 slump, his average has fallen to .219. How fitting.
To Cabrera and Eaton, here’s hoping they get hot and distance themselves from the Mendoza Line.