Mar 7, 2010, 10:07 PM EST
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Matt Chico, appearing in a big-league game for the first time since 2008, looked sharp.
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Matt Chico had pitched against major-league hitters before. Shoot, the guy led the Nationals' staff with 31 starts in 2007 as a rookie.
So why was the left-hander so nervous about a measly, two-inning relief appearance this afternoon against the Mets?
"This felt like my first big-league game in '07," he said. "That's what it felt like. My heart felt like it was jumping out of my chest."
At least Chico managed to throw all of his pitches in the immediate vicinity of the strike zone. This is someone who, after all, once stood on the mound at Dolphin Stadium, reached back and somehow saw his offering land in the third row of the stands behind the first-base dugout.
Nerves or not, Chico has always had an ability to regain his focus. Even after that fateful pitch in Miami three years ago, he came rightRead more »
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