Nationals Face Decision On Chien-Ming Wang

Chien-Ming Wang pitched again in the instructional league today, and Bob Klapisch tweets word from a scout that he looked "filthy."  Wang hit 89 mph and got four groundballs in 17 pitches, reports MASN's Ben Goessling.

If the Nationals want to retain Wang, they could simply tender him a contract for no less than $1.6MM, or work out a new agreement before the non-tender deadline. If the Nats non-tendered Wang and still wanted to bring him back, they'd have to either wait until May to sign him to a major league deal or sign him to a minor league contract and keep him in the minors until May 1st.

On October 6th, Goessling wrote that Nationals GM Mike Rizzo expects to work out a new deal with Wang before the December 2nd non-tender deadline; Wang's agent Alan Nero also told Goessling he expects to reach some kind of agreement with the team. The Nationals signed Wang in February to a $2MM deal with $3MM in performance bonuses, but his recovery from July '09 shoulder surgery became drawn out and prevented him from facing hitters until recently.


25 Responses to Nationals Face Decision On Chien-Ming Wang Leave a Reply

  1. Slopeboy 5 years ago

    Can he throw something besides the sinker and change-up? that was the dilemma with the Yankees. He could not throw a curve or a slider due to the pressure on his ulner nerve. Hopefully the operation has resolved that and he can resume that once glowing career.

    • TapDancingTeddy 5 years ago

      Wang was actually and sinker/slider pitcher. He experimented with the splitter, and change to try to get more diversity.

      His big problem was that he needed to live exclusively at the bottom of the strike zone. If he was missing low, he couldn’t attack the zone up, and hitters would wait him out. Once they got him in good hitters counts, he would have to raise the sinker up, and under those circumstances he was very hittable.

  2. shysox 5 years ago

    Wang was never even that good.
    When he went
    218 innings, 233 hits, .277 average, 1.31 WHIP, 59 walks in his breakout season in 2006.

    • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

      That was also in the AL East with a team with an average to below average defense. It does say something about his ability to make sure runners didn’t score. I do believe he was overrated but he still could be a potential solid #3 pitcher in the NL.

      I think the Nats should hold on to him simply to make sure he’s with them for the 2012 campaign… a potential break out year for the Nats.

      • Agree SWP though it should be noted that while he was in the AL East he played for one of the best offense in that league, not against it. And while the Yankees defense may not be the best their offense still gave him the opportunity to pile up big win numbers. So yeah, he was overrated but could obviously still pitch in his own right. At this point I think he’d be better off in the NL too just as long as he’s not expected to be a TOR starter or ace. He is what he is.

    • Slopeboy 5 years ago

      I’m sure Saber-Geeks will kill me about this, but the guy won 57 games in three years. there’s a point where wins account for something in a starter’s resume.

      • j6takish 5 years ago

        Good pitchers sometimes have crappy W/L records, but bad pitchers rarely have good W/L records.

        • Slopeboy 5 years ago

          Yep. I should have said: He won 55 games in 3 1/2 years

    • TapDancingTeddy 5 years ago

      Shysox, his peripherals don’t look good because he lived on ground balls. The WHIP isn’t as important when the hits allowed are largely singles, double plays erase extra base runners, and homers aren’t much of a factor..What does look good is 54-20 with a 3.79 ERA from 2005-2008.

  3. The_Porcupine 5 years ago

    Well, why not sign him again. Not like they have anything else to put in the rotation instead. A worthy low risk, high reward signing.

  4. bleachercreature 5 years ago

    You guys are lowballing Wang. He was one of the Yankees best pitchers while he was with them. For a time he was actually considered their ace. Despite him being great, I never pictured him as being that “ace” type pitcher. A great #2. He’s also a ground ball pitcher, which would account for the large amount of hits to his stats, however, when he was on, he was nearly unhittable. I would love to see Wang come back to the Yankees, but if he finds success with the Nationals, where he can be their solid veteran #2, good for him. The Nats would have to be stupid to let him go.

    • Guest 5 years ago

      Please tell me that I’m not the only person who giggled at “lowballing Wang.”

      • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

        You’re such a child… high five!

    • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

      If you read most of the comments above you’d know that he was never unhittable. In his 2 good years as a yank he had a H/9 of greater than 9.0. His success during those years was due to being able to induce groundballs to make sure runners couldn’t score and making sure hitters couldn’t take him deep. But he was very hittable.

      That said, I agree with your last sentence because in the NL and on the Nats he could be a solid #3. And as I said before, I have high hopes for the Nats in 2012.

      • YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

        The definition of a hit is a ball that touches a bat and does not result in an out. A groundball can be hit 8 feet away from that batters box and as long as the runner beats the throw to 1B then it’s a hit. That being said, going by the number of hits per 9 IP for a groundball pitcher is the worst way to judge them. To me, the greatest things about Wang was that he was a gb pitcher that could still bring it at 95 mph. His KO rate wasn’t high because he didn’t use it as a KO pitch. He was the epitome of a guy who WANTED contact.

        Not impressed? Check this out and keep in mind it was done while playing the Red Sox, Jays, Rays and Orioles 72x a year and playing in what, for the most part, was a hitters park with a mediocre at best IF before Cano improved defensively, before Jeter had his brief defensive range resurgence and before Tex came to NY (from 2005-2008) and we had the likes of Giambi, Branyan, Craig WIlson, Tino Martinez, Andy Phillips, Josh Phepls, Miguel Cairo, Richie Sexson, Wilson Betemit, Shelly Duncan and Doug Mientkiewicz. Mienty and Tino are the only decent gloves in the bunch.

        a) 54-20 record
        b) Fewest HRS allowed (12) of any MLB SP w/ over 150 IP-2006
        B) Tied for fewest HRS allowed (9) of any MLB SP w/ over 150 IP-2007
        c) Tied 5th in groundball out in the MLB w/ Derek Lowe in 2007
        d) #1 in groundball outs in the MLB in 2006

        Wang was so good in 2006-2008 that Im tempted to start a website and call it respectwangsgangsta dot com.

        • YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

          My bad. Obviously he wasn’t facing those teams 72x himself.

        • TapDancingTeddy 5 years ago

          Loved your post on Wang. I enjoyed watching the guy in Pinstripes, too.

          I agree about the quality of the fielding, except for Cano. Cano was always a plus range guy, although his play used to be a bit inconsistent. The rest of the infielders backing Wang were comprised almost totally of minus range guys, which should’ve been death to a sinker-baller.

  5. He’s worth the risk for the Nationals, I think. Non-tender him but bring him back at a low-base contract with plenty of incentives.

  6. phanfo 5 years ago

    One thing I have never understood and granted I am a born and raised new yorker is that why are people so surprised that new york pays the most but expects the most? That is why it is one of the financial centers of the world and of america. I have worked there my whole life save for the last 6 months and while I have always made more money than someone else in my field in a different part of the country it has always came with more expectations. Whenever people who became friends came from out of town they always say how the first six months are a culture shock and just how faster everything is. In the end they love it and appreciate it. They realize with your pay comes more stress. Why would baseball be any different?And yes I have moved to baltimore (kill me this place sucks) while my wife finished her residency and people are nicer, kinder, but simply slow and less work gets down. It is a relief to work in a small town since you don’t have the pressure of what have you done for my in the in the last five minutes and what you will do for me next, but it is also something I miss dearly.Not to say anyone from anywhere can’t do it. I know many people I grew up with you hated that feeling and left and some people who moved for nebraska and craved the pressure. It is all about personality and not where you are from, but please live in manhattan (not queens, bk, si, or the bx) and tell me it isn’t different from anywhere else you have been in at least america and most of the world.I will never forget my buddy from texas and his first day he went to cafe metro on 46th and lex and the line was long as always and when he got up he asked the lady about the sandwich options and what he could change, people grumbled and he was quickly told to go to the back of the line and make a decision. When you get up to order you better be ready or you will be yelled for being slow. The rest of the country this doesn’t happen in and this behavior diffuses to baseball expectations.

    • YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

      Your message took entirely way too long. I have a lot of things to do and would appreciate it if you could get your point across in 100 words or less and learn to abbreviate big words please. Times a tic…(oops gotta go ttyl)

      …..obviously I’m just joking.

  7. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    I felt like my post about Wang was sort of incoherent or incomplete. Basically this is a guy who despite a 95 mph FB he wanted the hitter to make contact. He was perhaps the best GB pitcher in the AL or at least top 3. He played in front of an IF that was probably slightly below average prior to 2009. He did what he was suppose to do as a GB pitcher. He kept the ball off the sweet part of the bat and was notoriusly stingy for not giving up the long ball (prior to 2009). The fact that he may have had a hit per 9 greater than what certainly doesn’t make him seem great but the fact that he didn’t walk many and kept the ball in the ballpark mean that he rarely beat himself. If the majority of your contact is going to result in gb then some balls are just going to find there way thru an IF littered w/ fielders w/ limited range. I can only imagine how much better he might have faired w/ the 2009/2010 range. The right side is above average and while the left side is a little lacking in range they’re at least sure handed. You put him on a team with an excellent IF and if he retains his stuff that he had before the injuries then he can be exceptional. As much as we talk about guys like Josh Beckett being studs his ERA during that time (est 4.15) and hrs totals (53) during Wang’s 2 full seasons were a lot higher (3.65 and 21 hrs). That’s not to say that Beckett may not have been the better pitcher just to say that Wang accomplished the same basic goals of being an above avg pitcher but just did it a different way.

  8. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    pardon the typos. I wasn’t allowed to correct them.

  9. slider32 5 years ago

    Wang and Vasquez are the two best bargins on the market. Everyone looking for a 2 or 3 starter will want to take a chance on them in the NL.

  10. LUWahooNatFan 5 years ago

    Sign him for something cheap, 2 Mil or less and I don’t know…maybe actually get to see him pitch this year.

  11. Slopeboy 5 years ago

    Finally!! A Geek with common sense. I find that many ‘traditionalist’ are tied to just the ‘old stats’ and the Sabermetrics rely just on the new numbers when making evaluations of players, which oftentimes devalue the less physically gifted players. Guys like Jeter and Glavine don’t really benefit from the saber numbers, but the proof is in the pudding when the play the game. Same with Wang if he’s healthy.$1.6MiL is a bargain.

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