Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Poise was how Radio Broadcaster Charlie Slowes described Ian Desmond's continuing growth on the baseball field--moments after Washington's Rookie Shortstop knocked in Nyjer Morgan with a key insurance run in the top of the 8th tonight at Wrigley Field.
Poise could also perfectly describe Livan Hernandez, too. For seven plus innings against The Chicago Cubs, Ole Number 61 showed the poise he's always had on the mound. Nothing, not a ripped liner to deep left by Derrek Lee--that Josh Willingham made a wonderful running over the shoulder catch for The Defensive Play Of This Game in the 6th--nor the chilly temperatures in The Windy City--bothered Livo when he's was in his groove.
Tyler Clippard didn't have command of most every one of his pitches this evening. But,"The Man With The Greatest Goggles In The Game" still showed poise when he battled his way out of a 1st and 2nd with no outs jam in the bottom of the 8th inning. That was pitching. That wasn't throwing. Clippard learned tonight how to bridge the gap from starter to closer--when you are not at your best. That's poise.
Matt Capps didn't let a two-out single in the bottom of the 9th (with a two run lead) bother him either. The Major Leagues' Saves Leader putting his poise on display when he battled Cubs Rookie Pinch Hitter Tyler Colvin through eight hard fought pitches to end this game. A struggle that included Pudge Rodriguez talking, directing and encouraging Matt--until Capps struck out Colvin and recorded his 9th Save of April.
Poise is also what Our Washington Nationals have shown through their first 21 games of 2010.
With Ryan Zimmerman out of the lineup for a significant stretch--Washington has still managed to win.
When down, D.C.'s Team hasn't given up.
And if Washington loses a close game one night--they fight back the very next to win.
Which is exactly what happened this evening.
References of not only good character, but polish, presence--and most assuredly poise.
Final Score from frigid Wrigley Field where a new found calmness & confidence led the way: Our Washington Nationals 3 and The Chicago Cubs 1. Curly "W" Number 11 was another step in the continuing improvement of D.C. Baseball. More consistent play; a better ability to adjust to whatever is thrown their way--and the resilency to always bounce back.
Poise was how Charlie Slowes described Ian Desmond's play tonight on WFED. But Charlie might as well have been talking about Our Washington Nationals. As a team, their poise has well exceeded expectations.
Tonight's In-Game Photos--Rex Arbogast (AP)