When I got a text message from a Cubs fan friend of mine on Monday night, I can't say I was surprised by the what he had to say: "Look for me at the game. And David DeJesus is a good pickup."
While I didn't see that friend on my television set, I did shoot him a message back in agreement. It's this move - a veteran pickup for the Washington bench - that continues to demonstrate that the Nationals organization is willing to make changes when changes need to be made.
They showed that when they sent down Drew Storen and Danny Espinosa earlier this year. And getting rid of Henry Rodirguez early on in addition to the eventual release of Roger Bernadina are positive signs to me. The honeymoon of 2012 is over and 2013, as far as I can tell, is all about trying to figure out the best way to maintain a roster for a first-place team.
There's a lot of talk regarding what the Nats will end up doing with DeJesus. Manager Davey Johnson indicated that he'd be more inclined to play a younger guy in the fourth outfielder slot with his team being so far back in the division standings and all, so Tyler Moore or another September callup may see more playing time than DeJesus overall. I foresee DeJesus being a strong off-the-bench lefty bat if he continues to produce, which is a definite improvement over Bernadina, who's been cold at the plate most of the season.
Don't get me wrong, Bernadina's defensive web gems will be missed, but that's a small price to pay while trying to recreate and maintain a first-place roster.
All the new pieces the Nats have added over the course of the season have yielded positive results as of late. For example, Tanner Roark pitched a stellar game after settling in at Wrigley Field on Wednesday night. It's all those little things that will eventually start adding up for the Nats. It may not be another season of October baseball for the Nats, but at least they're starting to put themselves back together.
Rachel Levitin blogs about the Nationals for We Love DC, and will be sharing her observations about baseball in the nation's capital as part of MASNsports.com's season-long initiative of welcoming guest bloggers to our little corner of cyberspace. All opinions expressed are those of the guest bloggers, who are not employed by MASNsports.com but are just as passionate about their baseball as our roster of writers.