Wily Mo Long Gone

Nats release mostly nothing slugger

Somewhere, Jim Bowden is gazing up at the mirror over his bed, and noticing a tiny tear rolling down his cherubic cheek.  For one by one, the Nationals are excising his mistakes, slashing and cutting away at the impressive -- in his mind, at least -- array of talent he had assembled.

The Nats released Wily Mo Peña last night, after he cleared waivers and refused to go to Syracuse.  He's a free agent now, although he gets to keep the $2 million parting gift P.T. Bowden gave him when he extended him two seasons ago.

He might be the perfect Jim Bowden player: all flash and sizzle, but very little substance.

Like Jim Bowden's tricked-out Segway, once you got past the rockin' paint job, at the end of the day, you notice you're tooling around on a machine that makes you look like a goofball.

Oh, Peña had the power.  But that was it.  He, like JimBo's cart, is a one-dimensional freak show.  The kind you smile at at first, 'til you realize what it is you're actually watching.

For every titanic blast he hit, there were 10 pointless four-pitch strikeouts, and countless misplays in the outfield as his over-sized linebacker's body limited him to about an 8-foot range.

He was the perfect Bowden player because he was an athlete.  Jim loves himself some big, young, strappin' men.

Never mind that baseball's full of terrific hitters and players who are complete slobs. 

John Kruk once famously responded, "I ain't an athlete, lady. I'm a baseball player."

Wily Mo is the opposite.

Jim Bowden never realized that, and now they're both gone.

Chris Needham used to write Capitol Punishment.  He blames Lenny Harris.

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