With the final weeks of the season winding down and with numerous call-ups joining the big club, many ballclubs with no shot at postseason play just go through the motions.
I don't believe this is the case with the Nats.
Jim Riggleman could very easily fill in his line-up card every night with players who are anxious to show what they can do at the big league level. Each of them did so on their respective minor league clubs.
But as Jim says, to pencil them in would not be fair to the integrity of the game. He wants to put the best players on the field for every game and it's just not fair to the veterans who've worked their tails off, not to have them in his lineup.
The Nationals, whether you believe it or not, still go out there every night with one mission on there minds and thats to win that game. That will be their focus for the remainder of the season. The club can play spoilers with games against Florida, the Philies again, the Dodgers, Braves and Mets - all with postseason hopes.
No question, there might be a tendancy to look to next year, but I don't think so. Zimmerman, Dunn, Dukes, Willingham, Harris and company still have unfinished business to take care of. How sweet would it be if Washington could run off a nice little winning streak to finish ther season on a high note?
Still, for others who do get a shot in the lineup, it's a golden opportunity to show management how far they've progressed in the farm system and why they should be included in next season's plans.
See you at the ballpark,