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Ian Desmond: 'I haven't really been getting it done'

For the first time, rookie shortstop Ian Desmond will not start for consecutive games tonight. Benched for the fourth time in five games, Desmond understands why.

"I haven't really been getting it done," Desmond said. "I'm the kind of guy that - regardless of what the reason is, if I was hitting .500 right now, [Manager Jim Riggleman] wouldn't have an option. I would have to be out there. I just need to pick it up a little bit, start playing the way I know I can play."

Desmond has descended into the first slump of his career. Since June 8, he is 9 for 56 (.161) with a .217 on-base percentage. At one point, he went 0 for 17 with seven strikeouts. His average and on-base percentage for the season have dropped to .250 and .289, respectively.

Desmond can sense opposing pitchers approaching him differently than earlier in the year. "Teams made adjustments," he said. "Now I got to make adjustments. I think I have. It took me a little longer than I would have liked, but I feel like I've got a pretty good idea at the plate right now."

While "it's not something I'm really happy with," Desmond said, he is unworried by his skid.

"It's the same exact thing [as in the minors], expect here it's a lot better because you're in the big leagues," Desmond said. "It's a lot harder when you're 0 for 10 or 0 for 15 or 0 for 20 in the minor leagues and you're only getting paid $400 a month, you know what I'm saying?

"I can feel it coming. Every day since the skid started, I came in for extra hitting and said, 'Hey, you know, I'm going to get two hits today.' It's going to come."

He added: "I just want to win. I don't really care if I'm playing or not."

Riggleman sat Desmond again not only to clear his head, but also in order to keep Alberto Gonzalez in the lineup for the fourth straight game. Gonzalez went 4 for 4 Tuesday night. Riggleman indicated that platoons may become common across the diamond.

"That's what I want to get back to," Riggleman said. "There's going to be some days people wonder why [Cristian] Guzman's not playing or Desmond's not playing. But we're not that club that's going to put that same seven or eight guys out there every day. It just doesn't work for us."

By Adam Kilgore  |  June 30, 2010; 7:01 PM ET
Categories:  Ian Desmond , middle infield  
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Desmond's been pretty well media-trained. Saying all the positive things even though his performance doesn't show it.

I like his confidence, and DO think he'll shake out of it, but what an impact his poor performance has been on the team the past month!

Desi - I believe in you, but you don't try to work your way out of it in the games!

Posted by: mo_dc | June 30, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

As a SS, Desmond needs to be more concerned with his defense. If he only had 9 errors for the year instead of 19, he could be hitting around .220/.310/.335, and he'd be in the lineup nearly every day, because his range is that good.

Sadly, defense on routine plays is his fatal flaw, not his bat - He's at the very least a replacement-level major-league hitter, but has too many lapses in concentration as a middle infielder, imo.

Posted by: BinM | June 30, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

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