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Johnson grapples with lineup

May 9, 2012, 10:28 PM EDT

US Presswire photo
Tyler Moore will make his second career start tonight in left field.

PITTSBURGH — When he arrived in Viera, Fla., for spring training, Davey Johnson had a clear idea what his starting lineup would look like, and had no reason to believe it would change on a daily basis.

But then various members of the Nationals roster started dropping like flies, and so the veteran manager found himself early this morning scribbling out various combinations that might provide some spark to his struggling offense.

"Believe me, I had four or five lineups I was going through last night at 1:30 in the morning," he said. "And I'm taking any kind of input, even from writers. I'm all for it."

Johnson was kidding about taking advice from writers (we hope) but he did proceed to detail the challenges of putting together a starting lineup that takes all sorts of things into consideration: What gives his team its best chance to win that day, what's best in the long-term, what's bestRead more »

  1. MicheleS - May 9, 2012 at 10:32 PM

    So where can we email our line ups to Davey?

  2. sm13 - May 9, 2012 at 10:40 PM

    It's really getting painful to watch Roger out there. He just has never grown into a legit major leaguer. You keep hoping he'll seize one of the many opportunities he's been given, but he always disappoints. It would make Davey's job easier if Roger would step it up, but it doesn't seem like that's ever going to happen.

  3. NatsNut - May 9, 2012 at 10:40 PM

    Davey, you know, that's kind of auditioning."…And Tyler Moore is kind of down on the list. These guys need to stand up. And if Tyler has a pretty good game, we'll take it from there."

  4. Jim Webster - May 9, 2012 at 10:50 PM

    Heaven help us if he considers lineup suggestions from us commenters on Nats Insider.

  5. Jim Webster - May 9, 2012 at 10:50 PM

    Heaven help us if he considers lineup suggestions from us commenters on Nats Insider.

  6. Gonat - May 9, 2012 at 10:59 PM

    sm13, why the Bernadina hatred? His last start before last night was April 25 and before that was April 19.You can't expect any more than what you got. His .308 OBP he had before last night was decent and he makes things happen.

  7. NatsJack in Florida - May 9, 2012 at 11:11 PM

    Sm13 obviously didn't see the top 100 plays of last year. Roger only had 2 in the top 10.

  8. sm13 - May 9, 2012 at 11:42 PM

    I understand that Roger had more than his share of highlight reel plays – I've been at Nats Park for several of them and was there when he shatteted his ankle. I like the guy and have always hoped he would prove that he's more than a AAAA player. Over the past 3 years, he has been given so many chances and has never proven that he can hit consistently in the major leagues. That's not hate, it is, unfortunately, reality.

  9. NatsJack in Florida - May 9, 2012 at 11:52 PM

    He's never gotten consistent time since the ankle injuy. Acta was his manager when he got hurt and by the time he recovered Riggleman, the veterans friend, was in charge.

  10. sm13 - May 9, 2012 at 11:57 PM

    I would say that he's never earned the consistent playing time. I just want to be clear, I'm not rooting against Roger, I would be thrilled if he lived up to his potential

  11. John - May 10, 2012 at 12:14 AM

    I'm wondering now if it isn't a calculated move on Johnson's part to stick with Espinosa, knowing full well that the latter has already reached a critical point in his development where he will either turn the corner and have a successful career, or be a complete bust and never see another day as a regular. Meanwhile, Bernadina has clearly maxed out and reached his ceiling.

  12. sm13 - May 10, 2012 at 12:36 AM

    Rizzo and Davey both made strong comments supporting Danny today. I hope the show of confidence helps him get on track. We need his power bat badly.

  13. NatsFanJim - May 10, 2012 at 12:47 AM

    MicheleS: Please — email your lineup suggestions to Davey. Lord knows he needs the help.Can you do something with Espi — like sit him?Can you do something with Ramos — like play Jesus the Great in his place?

  14. NatsFanJim - May 10, 2012 at 12:51 AM

    Im about risk poster ire, but I have to air it out.I've always been a Davey fan — but …with the lineups that he's putting out?Davey is a complete IDIOT (or senile).His lineups are silly, his game stategy is — well — absent: no bunting, no steals, no wheel plays, Nada.Hell, it took a 19 year old rookie to steal home — not Grandpa Davey.

  15. ehay2k - May 10, 2012 at 1:15 AM

    Take the hitting coach out of the equation and the lineup issues are simplified. With the possible exception of Zimm, there is not ONE Nat that can hit a curveball. Most can't even recognize one. It is absolutely pitiful.That is why A.J Burnett, W. Rodriguez, B. Arroyo, and every other soft tosser gets career strikeouts against us. I'm sure Eckstein is in line for sainthood. But he sure isn't going to the hitting coaches' HoF.

  16. Section 222 - May 10, 2012 at 1:19 AM

    He's never gotten consistent time since the ankle injury.Really? Bernadina started 111 games in 2011 and 71 last year. He's had a lot of chances to get regular at bats. I like him too. I want him to be a good hitter. Unfortunately, he just isn't. You can't blame that on Riggleman or Davey.

  17. ehay2k - May 10, 2012 at 1:35 AM

    They are walking LaRoche, putting winning run on base, to get to Bernadina. That says a lot. Hope the shark can hit it.

  18. sm13 - May 10, 2012 at 1:39 AM

    Thanks for digging up the numbers, 222. He has had the opportunities. Let's see if he can deliver tonight.

  19. ehay2k - May 10, 2012 at 2:03 AM

    Good thing I am not the GM, because I'd be saying it's time to cut the bottom 5%. This is MLB, not a training academy. Bernie and Nady can go.

  20. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - May 10, 2012 at 3:11 AM

    It's not about who goes, it's who you replace them with. Anybody can fire people.

  21. Adam - May 10, 2012 at 12:05 PM

    I have to say I agree with 222 and sm13 on Bernadina…I he's had a plethora of opportunities because of the injuries over the last two years. To say that Riggleman inhibited his development is horse heap. How many starts did he have under Rigglemen alone…I'd bet quite a few.

  22. Shell - May 10, 2012 at 6:10 PM

    if you're reading this Davey:LomboDesmondZimLaRocheHarperRamosAnkielBernadina/Moore (NEVER AGAIN NADY!!!)Pitcher

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