One of the topics that consistently comes up when I ask for questions for the Nats' Skipper Jim Riggleman from Federal Baseball.com readers is what Ian Desmond's going to have to do to get himself out of the bottom of the Nationals' batting order (7th and 8th) where he's hit in 14 of 29 starts so far this season, so I asked Mr. Riggleman this morning in light of the fact that the Nats' 24-year-old shortstop was once again in the 8-spot in the order with Adam Kennedy batting second where it seems a lot of people would like to see Desmond. Here's Mr. Riggleman's response:
Federal Baseball: "I was wondering what you're looking for from Ian Desmond before you're going to move him up in the order, or if you like him in the 8-spot?"
Jim Riggleman: "Well, you know it's a product really of who else is in the lineup that day. I don't have it on the top of my head, but he hasn't been in the 8-spot consistently, he's down there some days, but quite often he's been seventh, he's hit second...Really, Nyjer [Morgan's] up there at no.1, I like the way [Adam] Kennedy's brain works when he's in there hitting second. Guzman's done a good job hitting second, so it's kinda like I just don't have anywhere else to put him right now. So sometimes I hit him eighth, don't really want to hit [Roger] Bernadina eighth, I like to kind of go six and seven right/left with Pudge [Rodriguez] and then Bernadina there, so that puts Desmond eighth, but he's certainly not going to play his career out hitting eighth, he's gonna hit higher in the lineup, and he might end up being a second hitter, might end up being a third hitter or a sixth hitter, but right now that's where we need him to hit."
(ed. note - "For the record, Desmond's started 6 games batting second, 5 batting sixth and 7 each in the seventh and eighth spot in the order.")