May 10, 2010, 7:40 PM EDT
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Citi Field hosts the Nats and Mets for the next three games.
NEW YORK — There's no question Luis Atilano has been a real find for the Nationals. How many of you had ever heard of him when the season began? (I'll be honest: I barely paid attention to him all spring, until one day in late-March when I realized he was still in camp and team officials were saying positive things that made me think we could see him in the majors this year.)
As impressive as Atilano's first couple weeks in the big leagues have been, the real test for the rookie right-hander starts now. His first two times out, opponents really had no idea what they were dealing with. Now, the word has begun to spread. There's more video of Atilano facing big-league hitters, and everyone has a better idea how he tries to approach them.
Thus, don't be surprised if hitters start to adjust to him and perhaps enjoy a little more success. We saw glimpses of that the other night against the Braves, who strung together six runs against him. Now the onus is on Atilano to make the necessary adjustment. This is a crucial step in the process for every rookie pitcher. It's one thing to be successful your first couple of times out, when no one has a clue what you throw. It's quite another to be able to sustain it.
Tonight, we'll get a chance to see whether Atilano has what it takes to stick up here in the majors.
Check back for updates throughout…
NATIONALS AT METS
Where: Citi Field
Gametime: 7:10 p.m.
Radio: WFED-1500 AM, WWFD-820 AM
Weather: Sunny, 58 degrees, Wind 16 mph in from LF
CF Nyjer Morgan
2B Adam Kennedy
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam Dunn
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