He's perhaps the least talked-about player on the team, only getting action in limited doses and in specific situations. Yet Alberto Gonzalez has found his role with the Nationals better this year than perhaps at any time since the team traded for him in 2008.
That deal, which came late in the season, gave the Nationals hope Gonzalez could be an everyday player. But he proved last season he wasn't going to be the answer at second base, and when he made the team this year, it was only as a utility player. Gonzalez, though, seems to have found a home in that role.
He's hitting .299 this year, though he's been a little lucky with a .359 batting average on balls in play, and contributed a pinch-hit double in the Nationals' 4-0 win over the Marlins last night. And Gonzalez has established himself as perhaps the team's second-best defender, behind Ryan Zimmerman. He made a pair of impressive plays last night against the Marlins, after pinch-hitting for Stephen Strasburg in the seventh inning and finishing the game at second base.
For the season, Gonzalez has a 3.8 UZR at three infield spots, and he's contributing off the bench when the Nationals need him. A role player is probably the extent of what he's going to be, but he's shown he can still provide value that way.