Left-hander Ross Detwiler takes to the hill in the series finale with the NL East champion Philadelphia Phillies Wednesday night at Nats Park, opposed by right-hander Joe Blanton.
Detwiler was thrilled to get that win last time out but says a lot of credit goes to the defense behind him.
“I went six innings and the team really picked me up,” said Detwiler on the Nats defense.
“After they pinch hit for me there, I think they scored four or five runs and it ended up being the winning run. I gave up two hard hit balls the first two hitters of the game. From that point on I really had to bear down and keep the ball down. I was leaving the ball up to both those guys. Professional hitters are going to hit that stuff hard. I started using the changeup a lot more.
“I think the biggest turning point was there was few big defensive plays early in the game. That showed me to just get a groundball and this infield is going to eat it right up and get the out at first.”
Detwiler also threw the sinker for strikes and that induced some more grounders, and he says that success helped him gameplan better for this outing.
“I will attack the strike zone with the sinker and throw a changeup when I need to - Throw the curveball when I am ahead in the count or for a strike when I am behind,” Detwiler said.
The left-hander says he has something to prove in February 2011 as well.
“Spring training will be a whole new year,” Detwiler said. “I am finally going to be healthy. I am really looking forward to that. I am not going to look past this last start. I will try to end on a high note.
“A lot of us sat out here and watched (the Phillies) celebrate and it kind of eats at you a little bat, especially with all the Phillies fans coming up here and all the chants going on the entire game.”