When Jason Marquis signed with the Nats he had a lot to say about bringing a winning attitude to Washington and mentoring the youngins. That apparently wasn’t just a function of post-deal euphoria, because he’s still bringing the rah-rah. Asked whether the Nats’ many moves this offseason translate to, say, a .500 record, Marquis wasn’t having any of it:
“No, I don’t see why we can’t shoot for the stars. Why do you want to
limit yourself to 81 wins? Why do I want to limit myself to 15 wins? If
I am taking the ball 34 times, I should win 34 times. We step on the
field 162 times, we should win 162 times. You shouldn’t say ‘let’s win
81 games’ than you putting a number (on it) and you are satisfied with
81 wins. I don’t think you should ever be satisfied.”
I’m torn. On the one hand I hate it when ballplayers talk in those Bull-Durhamesque “I just want to help the ballclub” platitudes, but I also don’t like it when someone comes with the “defeat is not an option/victory is certain/give 110%” rebop either.
I’m not faulting Marquis here — I think he went with the better of the two tacks, and it’s nice to hear optimism in NatsLand, because their fans deserve some of it by now — but I think exchanges like these show the limits of what we can learn from people in the media talking to the guys who throw the baseball.
“Yes, Byron, I think we’ll win 86 games, but will fall out of the wild card race in September when Elijah Dukes develops plantar fasciitis on his plant foot.”
What else can he say?