Ian Desmond's place in the batting order explained
Nationals Manager Jim Riggleman moved Ian Desmond to the second spot in the order, a move designed to stoke a slumbering offense. Desmond typically bats eighth, but he has had success hitting second in a limited sample. He is 12 for 34 with a home run and a triple this year.
"We struggled to score runs in these four games coming out of the all-star break," Riggleman said. "Just decided to move the lineup around a little bit, get some guys in some different spots. See if we can create a little offense that way."
Aside from sparking the dormant offense, Riggleman also wanted to give Desmond a different perspective at the plate. While regularly batting eighth, Desmond has been forced to hit a steady diet of tough pitches, which pitchers can afford to throw him with the pitcher looming next in the order.
"Desi has had to eighth a lot, and that's not an easy place to hit in the National League," Riggleman said. "I didn't want to keep him hitting eighth. It's just the way our lineup was set up. We didn't really have anybody else to hit eighth, to tell you the truth. We're going to try to get him out of that eighth spot and try to get him going."
Desmond won't necessarily hit second regularly, but Riggleman does want to hit him in places other than eighth, "see how he reacts in different spots in the lineup," Riggleman said.
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