No one expected much out of the Nationals in 2005. They were relocated just before the start of the season, didn't spend money wisely (see Guzman, Cristian), and made Jim Bowden their GM.
Despite all of that, the Nationals (via smoke and mirrors) led the East for much of the early portion of the season and stayed in the Wild Card hunt until late into the year.
Now it seems that the Nats are making a move for 2006. No, they haven't started spending any money on free agents. Maybe that will happen if their ownership situation is settled sometime soon (but hey - the other owners know that completing the sale of the club allows the Nats to jump in for free agents, so look for the sale of the team to stall).
What the Nats have done is align themselves with the Dalai Lama. The freaking Dalai Lama. Great, just great. The Braves rid themselves of the Dalai Lama of pitching coaches, in Leo Mazzone, and then the Nationals go out and get the actual Dalai Lama on their side.
Oh, and the Dalia Lama says you should stop hating on left-handers. It's unbecoming. And wrong.