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The First Workout? Yes, It Went Well

You could make a calendar just from the images of the Nats' two-hour workout this morning. It was windy, no warmer than 65 by the end, but the sun was just strong enough to give everybody a long morning shadow. As pitchers and catchers stretched, Manager Manny Acta and new coach Marquis Grissom both leaned on their bats. Bob Boone chatted with Pat Corrales, union of 28 years of major league catching experience. A strength coach stood tall among the pack of bending, twisting players, shouting, "If you don't feel the pull, you're not doing it right."

Pitchers moved from drill to drill in 10-minute intervals, sent jogging by the sound of an airhorn. Most eyes, including those of Acta and (at least initially) GM Jim Bowden, were on what folks here call the "ten-pack," a rectangular area with 10 pitching mounds, each positioned near the next like boxes at a driving range.

In all, 13 pitchers worked off the mound today.

In group 1 -- Jason Bergmann, Mike Hinckley, Collin Balester, Joel Hanrahan, Ross Detwiler

In group 2 -- Garrett Mock, Steven Shell, John Lannan, Terrell Young

In group 3 -- Josh Towers, Jesus Colome, Scott Olsen, Jordan Zimmermann

Across the board, coaches left the day feeling good about the practice. (Of course, I'm still waiting to hear about the first opening workout day tirade.) Acta described it as "your typical first day, a lot of enthusiasm. A lot of eager kids."

Pitching coach Randy St. Claire paid particular attention to the new arms in camp, especially Jordan Zimmermann and Ross Detwiler. St. Claire had conducted a special session with Detwiler in the middle of last season, and then traveled to watch him this offseason in the Arizona Fall League, advising him on how to smooth out the angles in his delivery. Today, Detwiler was "the best I've seen him," St. Claire said, so "I know he worked really hard on it."

By Chico Harlan  |  February 16, 2009; 3:11 PM ET
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Next: Bergmann To 'Pen, And Other Notes


"... Detwiler was 'the best I've seen him,' St. Claire said, so 'I know he worked really hard on it.'"

... you can't ignore praise like that, when it comes from St. Randy. This ST is shaping up pretty good so far. Yes it's early days yet, but a guy has a right to get excited doesn't he?

Posted by: natscanreduxit | February 16, 2009 3:30 PM | Report abuse

>but a guy has a right to get excited doesn't he?

When Detwiler can throw 95, and has knee-buckling breaking stuff, and learns how to repeat his delivery and throw strikes, it's impossible not to. You can pick up a 2nd baseman anywhere, but these guys are rare. Maybe we get four out of five are lefties in the rotation. When's the last time that happened?

Posted by: Brue | February 16, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Going into spring training the outlook is always exciting. We are looking forward for a productive season for the Washington Nationals. Hoping the season that lies head is going to be a great one for the offense and the defense and that the pitching and catching hold together and stay on the same wavelength as coordinates go. Manny Acta. the Leader must lead and the rest of the team should follow his game plan to have a successful season. Good Luck Nationals have a great spring training.

Posted by: quinn5459 | February 16, 2009 6:52 PM | Report abuse

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