Apr 10, 2011, 4:13 AM EST
Associated Press photo
Tom Gorzelanny reacts to one of Carlos Beltran’s two homers.
NEW YORK — Jerry Hairston has played 1,120 games in the big leagues, spending time at seven different positions around the diamond, everything but pitcher and catcher. And if a manager asked him to do either of those, he’d probably jump at the opportunity.
When you make your living as a utilityman, you have to have the confidence in yourself to be able to shift from position to position, knowing you can be counted on to play each of them with aplomb.
“I pride myself, wherever I’m at,” Hairston said. “I make the plays, period. Whether I’m playing short, center. No excuse.”
So Hairston made no excuses for his botched play on Carlos Beltran’s relatively routine flyball to left in the sixth inning Saturday night at Citi Field, the play that more than anything defined the Nationals’ 8-4 loss to the Mets.
“I just missed it, flat-out,” he said. “I put us behind the 8-ball tonight. I really feel responsible for the loss.”
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