My daughter attended a high school that did not have much of a field hockey tradition. In the five years before her arrival, I think the school won a single varsity game. They'd get beat by scores like 18-1 and 14-0.
She was part of a group of about a dozen that had some talent. They had a good junior varsity season as freshmen, even beating their biggest rivals for the first time in about a zillion years.
The next year was decision time. The group could stay at the JV level and probably dominate. Or it could be elevated to the varsity, take a few lumps but learn what it was like at that level. It's a faster game, a little more rugged. The coach made what seemed like a no-brainer decision. Up to the varsity they went, where they had a decent season. The next two years were very good. The program qualified for the district tournament for the first time in ages and then the regional tournament for the first time maybe ever. The year after my daughter's group left, the team made the semifinals of the state tournament.
There is a point to all that. If Ian Desmond has some iota of a chance of being more than a stopgap shortstop, isn't this the year to find out? I don't think too many expect this team to be a contender, so what would it hurt to see if Desmond can handle the job?
I've never been a Guzman hater. Good bat, I can live with him in the field. He's far from the biggest problem the Nats have. If he's the SS, I'm fine with that. Does anyone think he's in Washington beyond this season, that he's the SS when this team finally gets good?
So why not give Desmond a full-time chance? If he is the answer, great. If he's not, fast-track Danny Espinoza or get started on a search for another shortstop.
I just don't see what more time in the minors is going to do at this point. I'd hope for a utility role over that, so he can at least be exposed to major-league level baseball. Just keep him out of right field.
My current poll asks for your opinion on the whole Desmond scene. I'm eager to see what everyone thinks.
My previous poll drew a paltry 34 voters and I think that was a false total. We had 14 voters (me included) who thought Mike Bacsik grooved the record home run pitch to Barry Bonds and 20 who thought he did not.
Odd thing, though. The first few votes came in at a normal pace, a trickle. They were evenly split. Then there was a sudden rush of about 10 votes, all declaring no. I smell a rat.