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LaRoche just wants to be himself

Mar 7, 2011, 4:00 PM EDT

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Adam LaRoche signed a two-year, $16 million contract with the Nats this winter.

The Nationals’ new first baseman, like the Nationals’ old first baseman, is a left-handed-swinging, power-hitting, country boy named Adam whose easy-going personality makes him a well-respected and popular clubhouse figure.

But let’s make this clear: Adam LaRoche is NOT Adam Dunn, nor does he intend to try to fill those large shoes he now occupies.

“We have two different styles, and we’ve both had success doing it the way we do it,” LaRoche said last week inside the Nats’ clubhouse in Viera. “I’m not going to step into a new team and try to change who I am or the way I play the game just to fit somebody else’s approach. He just happens to the be guy who was there before me.”

True enough, though the guy who was there before LaRoche was supremely popular, and his departure over the winter was the source of much anguish among a fan base that begged the organization to re-sign him at every opportunity.

But what’s Dunn is done, and while the Big Donkey blasts 40 homers this year for the White Sox, LaRoche will attempt simply to do what he’s done throughout his career: Play a consistent brand of baseball in all aspects of the game.

Read my full story at CSNwashington.com.

  1. Steve M. - Mar 7, 2011 at 4:27 PM

    Mark Zuckerman said…But what's Dunn is done Yah, and for richer and poorer, etc. etc. and LaRoche should be hitting in one of the best lineups he has seen since his brief stint in Boston and his years in Atlanta in his early days in the MLB.If Adam L. can stay around that 100 RBI mark he had last year with good defense at 1st base, the Nats I believe overall will see an upgrade. Remember, Dunn only had 3 more RBIs then Adam L. and 10 more runs scored last year and I believe the lineup around LaRoche will be much better this year then what he had in 2010.

  2. Theophilus - Mar 7, 2011 at 5:05 PM

    I know Mark is housebound in DC but I would be curious to know if he saw any signs while in Viera that Marrero has learned anything about defense. A couple of game stories have referred to Marrero's good defense, which in the past has has been unheard of. I'd like to see some stability around the infield, and if LaRoche performs at career levels I wouldn't mind seeing him stick around for 3-4 years. But if Marerro has developed a feeling for the right end of a first baseman's mitt that would be good news.

  3. joemktg - Mar 7, 2011 at 5:09 PM

    How many Nats followers expect LaRoche to be Dunn? Fairly certain that the vast majority know that they are two completely different players…especially defensively. Someone please tell Adam L. no worries.

  4. SonnyG10 - Mar 7, 2011 at 5:16 PM

    We don't want Adam LaRoache to be like Adam Dunn. We would have kept Dunn if that was the case. We just want Adam L to be what he's been in the past with the good defense and relatively good offense.

  5. Mark'd - Mar 7, 2011 at 5:26 PM

    All good comments. I just love when people talk about being "himself". Just be the best you can be and grow as a player and that will be an upgrade over the predecessor. LaRoche had some real solid stats last year and 100 RBIs would be the number with a better BA and Runs Scored

  6. Doc - Mar 7, 2011 at 5:30 PM

    Now if Morgan could be someone else–he'd be better off, and so would the Nats!!

  7. PAY TO PLAY - Mar 7, 2011 at 5:38 PM

    Ben Goessling writes…Manager Jim Riggleman also said that reliever Henry Rodriguez is "100 percent ready" physically to pitch in a spring game after arriving late in camp because of visa issues, but he wasn't sure if Rodriguez had gone through the Nationals' entire training protocol before appearing in a game. —————————OK, if the Manager of the team isn't sure, then who knows the answer to the all important question of whether Henry Rodriguez has gone through the entire training protocol….and oh, what is the training protocol he refers to?Is that one finger for a fastball and 2 for a slider? Come on, really? No wonder Riggles new nickname is Giggles. Who's on first and What's on 2nd.

  8. A DC Wonk - Mar 7, 2011 at 5:51 PM

    "But what's Dunn is done"You've been waiting all spring training to use that one, eh? ;-)

  9. Mark Zuckerman - Mar 7, 2011 at 6:07 PM

    Theophilus said…I know Mark is housebound in DC but I would be curious to know if he saw any signs while in Viera that Marrero has learned anything about defense. A couple of game stories have referred to Marrero's good defense, which in the past has has been unheard of. I'd like to see some stability around the infield, and if LaRoche performs at career levels I wouldn't mind seeing him stick around for 3-4 years. But if Marerro has developed a feeling for the right end of a first baseman's mitt that would be good news.I didn't get to see a lot of Marrero while I was in Viera, but what I did see of him in the field was encouraging. He looked much more comfortable at first base than I remembered, both in fielding grounders and in throwing.

  10. Mark'd - Mar 7, 2011 at 6:14 PM

    Pay2Play – I have seen pitchers traded that pitch the next day for their new team so I am curious to this PROTOCOL also.

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB MN
WASHINGTON 78 58 -- 19
ATLANTA 72 66 7.0
MIAMI 67 69 11.0
NEW YORK 64 74 15.0
PHILADELPHIA 63 74 15.5
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UPCOMING SCHEDULE
TUE: Nats at Dodgers, 10:10 p.m.
WED: Nats at Dodgers, 3:10 p.m.
THU: OFF
FRI: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Phillies at Nats, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Phillies at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
MON: Braves at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
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