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MORE COMING AND GOINGS: BOOKER RETURNS, WATSON LEAVES, BYRD MOVES

[July 14th] -- More comings and goings in and around the Nationals this afternoon.

Chris Booker, (age 29, RHP) was reacquired by the Nationals. He was signed last fall by Jim Bowden as a minor league free-agent, but was plucked from the team's roster by the Philadelphia Phillies in the Rule V draft. He was then claimed off the waiver wire by the Royals this spring. After playing in just one game, however, Kansas City tried to remove him from their 40-man roster. The Rule V draft requires that if that happens, the player must be offered back to the original team for half of the original cost. The Nationals took Booker back and assigned him to New Orleans. If the Royals have no use for a pitcher, no one does. My guess is he will do little more than fill out a Zephyrs' uniform for the rest of the season.

Marlon Byrd cleared waivers (which really surprised me - I thought some team would take a chance) and agreed to report to 'AAA' New Orleans. I still think that, if Byrd can play baseball without "thinking" about his mechanics all the time, he could be an asset to the Nationals.

Brandon Watson was claimed off the waiver wire by the Cincinnati Reds. Yesterday, the Reds send us all-stars for middle relievers and today they take out our trash? Memo to Jim Bowden: we owe the Reds big-time.
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Comments:
Boy, is that addition by subtraction. Watson was no more a major leaguer than my siamese cat. Have the Reds gone insane? Do they think Watson is heir apparent to Ken Griffey? The Nats need to get their triple A team out of the PCL, where batting averages are very inflated. This only serves to give very false impressions of a player's major league potential.
 
My guess is that Watson is envisioned to be a 4th or 5th outfielder, like Endy Chavez is with the Mets these days. Both would be a great pinch-runner late in the game, right?
 
Felipe Lopez looks like he is going to fit right in with the hapless Nats. He dribbled to the pitcher with Soriano on second base in the first inning, then committed an error leading to a unearned run. Then, he struck out on a pitch in the dirt with the bases loaded ending the inning. Yea, I know this is only his first game but Felipe looks right at home. Despite all the excitement about the trade, Wayne Krizky may have Denny McLained us.
 
Farid, Endy Chavez can hit. When he played regularly for the Expos in 2004 he batted a not to shabby .277. The complaint against him was his OBP. Watson can't hit a lick and he was not a smart base runner either. He was picked off first base several times back in April when he was a regular.
 
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