I've been fairly quick to criticize Rob Dibble here and I feel bad about that because, as I've noted, he seems like a good guy and that's more important than anything else when it comes to the bottom line.
I'm also a fair guy and I've noted several times that when you get past the cheering and clapping and talking over Bob and get down to actual analysis, he's often spot on. And, for all his clapping and cheering, he's not afraid to rip when a rip is merited.
He didn't exactly rip on the postgame last night but he made a very good point without naming names (that I heard). He talked about the "changes" Jim Riggleman made and how they worked and then wondered if the Nats should stick with those "changes" a while longer and let people earn their way back into the lineup.
Hmmmm. Who could he mean here? Changes? How about change? Only one that I noticed. The regular C started. So did the regular 1B, 2B, 3B, LF, CF and RF. What's missing here? Oh yeah, the shortstop!
Everybody loves Ian Desmond. Hard not to love a young player who flashes that much ability and doesn't seem in any way to be dogging it. But even Mrs. Desmond would have to agree things are to the point where the liabilities might be outweighing the assets. Might be? I'm being too nice. ARE outweighing the assets. His penchant for making a spectacular play here and there is nice. His penchant for often blowing the routine play is aggravating and becoming too common. Plus, when was the last time he had a hit?
You aren't going to get better on the bench, that's for sure. You also aren't going to botch the easy double play ball from the bench. I'm not a shrink or even a real manager (just an armchair manager) so I don't have the perfect solution. But I have zero issue with trotting Gonzo out to short daily at least through the All-Star break. Given Desmond some time to clear his head and all that.
Gonzo is not a long-term answer but he's more than acceptable short term. I think the idea of giving up on Desmond is absurd and I'm hopeful he'll develop into at least an adequate fielder. The idea of giving him an extended break is a good one.
Interesting that Gonzo is even still here. Who had that on March 1 when it seemed inevitable he'd be long Gonzo by now?
New poll coming soon. My recent poll drew 70 votes (sniff sniff) and most think Ryan Zimmerman should be the Nats all-star. He got 36 votes. Tyler Clippard was next with nine and I'd guess most of those votes were cast before the weekend. Jee-SUS got eight, Pudge got six, Dunn and Capps got four and Willingham three.
I still think Zimmerman will again be the only one wearing a Nats uniform in Anaheim. There is no obvious Nat, at least not to me. If Dunn is selected instead, it won't be a crime. I don't see any way anyone other than one of those two goes at this point.
Gonzo ain't going but I hope he's going out to short tonight. And tomorrow. And every day for a couple of weeks.