The Nationals keep a French press in their dugout

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As a fan of another National League East team I’m not supposed to like the Nationals, but I have to tip my cap to their taste in coffee.

In this story from Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post we learn why a French press-style coffee pot was recently seen in the Nats’ dugout during a game. Turns out that it’s Chris Heisey and Stephen Drew‘s doing. Heisey got hooked on French Press coffee and then Drew did too and now it’s a thing with the Nats.

The key takeaway here, though, is not so much that French press coffee is the best. It’s good, but you can brew good coffee without one too if you make an effort. No, the key here is that Heisey and Drew had the good sense to say no to k-cups, which are objectively awful, and to drink their coffee black like adults with good taste:

He and Drew are the unofficial supervisors of the French press production. Drew got involved when he tired of running back and forth to the single-cup coffee maker in the clubhouse. When Heisey’s press was not providing enough coffee for all those consuming it, Drew bought a bigger one.

“We don’t put anything in it. It’s just straight black,” Drew said. “Everybody started getting it. It really is a taste. Once you get used to it, you don’t want anything else.”

I’ll tolerate you using a little cream if you have a sensitive stomach or something, but black is better. And if you put sugar in your coffee I simply cannot agree with your lifestyle and would ask that you not flaunt such sickness like that in front of me and my family.

Anyway, I predict that if the entire Nats team starts drinking black, French press coffee, they will win the NL East. Unless the Mets go for broke and hire someone to do a pour-over thing for them in their clubhouse. That could be a game changer.

Justin Verlander named 2019 American League Cy Young Award winner

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Astros starter Justin Verlander was voted by the Baseball Writers Association of America as the 2019 American League Cy Young Award winner. Teammate Gerrit Cole finished in a close second place at 159 points. Charlie Morton finished third at 75 points, Shane Bieber fourth at 64, Lance Lynn fifth at 18, Eduardo Rodríguez and Lucas Giolito sixth at eight, and Mike Minor eighth at seven.

Verlander, 36, won the AL Cy Young Award (and AL MVP Award) in 2011 with the Tigers). He and Cole became the first pair of teammates to finish first and second on the ballot for the AL Cy Young Award. Four NL teammates accomplished the feat: Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling in 2001 and ’02, Don Newcomb and Sal Maglie in 1956, and Mike Marshall and Andy Messersmith in 1974.

During the regular season, Verlander led all starting pitchers in wins (21), games started (34), innings pitched (223), and WHIP (0.803). He also compiled a 2.58 ERA with a 300/42 K/BB ratio. Along with a 300-strikeout season, Verlander achieved other milestones, including reaching 3,000 strikeouts for his career and 200 career postseason strikeouts (an all-time record).

2019 was not without controversy for Verlander, a future Hall of Famer, as he had a well-publicized disagreement with Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press. He tried to have Fenech barred from the clubhouse during media availability despite the collective bargaining agreement ensuring access to BBWAA-credentialed reporters. It was one of many Astros-related scandals in 2019.

Verlander is the first Astro to win the Cy Young Award since Dallas Keuchel in 2015. Roger Clemens (2004) and Mike Scott (1986) also won the award back when the Astros were in the National League.