VIERA, Fla. - We've played 2 1/2 innings at Space Coast Stadium, and for the second time this spring, Ross Detwiler is showing off how much he's improved over the winter. He's struck out four straight Braves batters, and has five Ks in three innings. The Nationals trail 1-0, but the run they gave up was unearned. From Detwiler's perspective, things couldn't be going much better.
We've been talking all spring about his revamped mechanics, and they've helped his curveball especially. He's used that pitch effectively so far today, and has plenty of zip on his fastball. I'm hoping to run down to talk to a few scouts in the next inning or two and see what they think of him.
The run the Nationals gave up was because of an Ian Desmond throwing error on a fairly routine grounder; it would have ended the inning, but Desmond didn't throw the ball squarely enough and it skipped low away from Michael Aubrey at first. Speaking of the Nationals' middle infield, though, Danny Espinosa caught a throw from Nyjer Morgan and threw a strike home to nail Jason Heyward at the plate in the second inning. It's the second runner the Nationals have thrown out at home in two days.
So we're in the third, and the Braves lead 1-0. JD Martin is due up after Detwiler.