LaRoche dropped to sixth in Nats’ order

Mired in an 0-for-22 slump, Adam LaRoche has been dropped to sixth in the Nationals’ batting order.

In an attempt to get his first baseman going, manager Davey Johnson has bumped LaRoche down a spot in the lineup and moved Ian Desmond up to the five-hole.

This is the first time LaRoche has hit as low as sixth in the order since April 11 of last year.

Typically a slow starter (he’s just a .215 career hitter in March/April), LaRoche is really off to a rough 2013, batting just .143 through 21 games.

He has nine strikeouts during this 0-for-22 stretch.

Outside of flipping LaRoche and Desmond in the order, Johnson’s lineup from 1-8 looks the same as it did yesterday. Ross Detwiler will take the mound for the Nats today, searching for his second win of the year.

Detwiler, who has a 1.38 ERA through four starts, held the Reds to six hits and one unearned run back on April 6 in his first start of the season.

Despite posting a 2.48 ERA in five career outings against the Reds, Detwiler is 0-3 in those games.

The Nats will take their hacks against Cincinnati left-hander Tony Cingrani, who is 1-0 with a 2.25 ERA this season.

Cingrani was actually teammates with Nats third baseman Anthony Rendon at Rice University. The two played college ball together for two seasons.

The Nats have already taken the season series from the Reds, taking four of the six games played between the two teams so far. They can notch a four-game sweep of Cincinnati with a win today.

For the Nats
CF Denard Span
2B Danny Espinosa
LF Bryce Harper
RF Jayson Werth
SS Ian Desmond
1B Adam LaRoche
3B Anthony Rendon
C Kurt Suzuki
LHP Ross Detwiler

For the Reds
CF Shin-Soo Choo
SS Zack Cozart
1B Joey Votto
2B Brandon Phillips
3B Todd Frazier
RF Jay Bruce
LF Xavier Paul
C Corky Miller
LHP Tony Cingrani

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