When big moments are about to happen there is no social media better than Twitter. It is excellent at reactions and a lot of them don’t make any sense unless you are following along with the events people are reacting to. That is what made today so strange and why I was consistently on Twitter starting this afternoon.
Myself, along with every other Nationals fan, Knew Max Scherzer was going to be traded. It was a surprise when he made his start as we were also told that was unlikely but it was nice to see him pitch one more time. He had a good game, the Nationals won, and then during the second game of the double header the news started to come out.
First it was the Padres were close to a deal with the Nationals for Max Scherzer, then it was the Dodgers are still involved, then it was Russell Westbrook was traded to the LA Lakers, and then it was…wait that last one isn’t baseball. That is when everything became really really weird. The Nationals and the Wizards were now working on simultaneous trades to send star players to Southern California.
Before the night was over Max Scherzer, Trea Turner, and Russell Westbrook were traded to LA for a plethora of players. The Nationals ended up with four prospects, two of them allegedly two of the best in the game, and the Wizards got three players and a draft pick or two. I’m still not certain what all happened, what the teams I root for got back, and if I will like either of these deals in the future.
It is rare that a MLB player is traded for a prospect that ends up being as good or better than him. Max Scherzer is a free agent at the end of this year so trading him makes a lot of sense. Trea Turner on the other hand is a young, exciting superstar who is criminally underrated and the exact type of player teams should be looking to lock up. I have heard that the deals offered to Turner that he turned down were more than fair and that he doesn’t want to be in DC.
At this point I think we need to rewind for a second and mention that Turner is currently on the IL because of a covid outbreak and it is widely believed he is unvaccinated. A lot of pro-athletes have come out as anti-vaxxers and baseball players tend to be more conservative than other sport’s athletes. It is also worth mentioning that on his way out of town Anthony Rendon made some strange political comments about how people do things in Texas and the city of DC being a left leaning city.
Now this is all speculation in my mind but when you see conservative Congress members bashing DC as one of the most liberal cities in the country, calling it a hell hole, and whatever other naive comments they make it isn’t hard to imagine that a conservative baseball player that might align with that way of thinking might not want to stick around a city that he feels is a hell hole. I’m not saying that is the case with Turner but the thought did cross my mind if the reports of the deals offered him being more than fair are true.
I still think the Nats would have been better off keeping Turner but they wouldn’t have gotten the prospect haul they got with Scherzer alone and while it is hard to imagine any of the players they got helping as much as Scherzer or Turner in the future those two players weren’t the future. Scherzer is a free agent after this season and Turner after 2022 and if Turner simply didn’t like playing in DC nothing would make him stay.
Watching this all go down was a strange and surreal experience and all I can do is hope it all works out in the future and the Nets get to win another World Series sometime in the near future.