"We Don't Feel Like We're Out Of This, Not By A Long Shot." - Washington Nationals' Manager Davey Johnson On NLDS With St. Louis Cardinals

Brad Mills-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Washington Nationals' manager Davey Johnson told reporters this morning that his team doesn't feel like they're out of the series with St. Louis even though they trail the Cardinals 2-1 after yesterday's loss.

"We're going to try to make sure they don't repeat," Davey Johnson told reporters this morning when asked about how hard it is for a team to win back-to-back World Series Championships. The 2011 World Series winning St. Louis Cardinals hold a 2-1 lead in the NLDS over the Washington Nationals heading into Game Four this afternoon, but the Nats' 69-year-old skipper said that he and the Nats are going to do all that they can to make sure the Cardinals don't repeat. "They've got to get through us first," Johnson said.

The Cardinals' finished the regular season with the NL's best AVG (.276) OBP (.338) and second-best SLG (.450) against left-handers, a fact the Nationals' manager acknowledged in today's pregame press conference, while maintaining that he has confidence in today's starter, 26-year-old '07 1st Round pick Ross Detwiler, who is, of course, a lefty.

"Left-handers have trouble with the ballclub," Johnson said, "We're in a situation where if Det has a problem I can go to [Jordan] Zimmermann earlier." Zimmermann, Nats' 26-year-old right-hander, who threw 63 pitches in 3.0 IP against the Cards in a Game 2 loss, is available out of the pen, but as Johnson admitted, "There's not a gameplan, a really good game plan for when you don't get a good start from your starters."

If the Nationals get to a Game 5 by winning today, 21-game winner Gio Gonzalez, another lefty, is lined up to pitch his second career postseason game. The 27-year-old former Oakland A's starter told reporters this morning that he believes in Detwiler's ability to get them to a fifth game with the Cardinals.

"Ross has been great for us all year," Gonzalez told reporters, "The guy has been doing his job, his part. He got us 10 good wins this year. He's been unbelievable for us. I have all the confidence in the world that he's going to be a pretty good pitcher, in fact, better than we expect in the near future. He's a guy that's been unbelievable for us, and we feel very confident that he's going to do an extremely good job for us."

"[Detwiler] is going to go out there and try to give us whatever he can," Gonzalez said. But it's up to the whole team to make sure they play again tomorrow in the D.C. "There's no pressure on the guy, he's our guy right now. We just want him to go out and give us five or six good innings."

"We have to [make] the statement right off the bat that there will be a Game 5," Gonzalez said.

The Nationals are prepared, according to their manager, to throw just about everything they can at the Cardinals today. In discussing what his starter and hitters have to do to win, the Nats' skipper said it's simple, "You have to use all your weapons when you're facing a good club and when you get to this time of year, all the clubs are good and balanced offensively, defensively, pitching. You have to make adjustments to be successful."

Davey Johnson said he thought his team had the right mentality heading into Game 4 with St. Louis. "They have that mindset," Johnson said, "Take nothing for granted. And we don't feel like we're out of this, not by a long shot. Believe me."

The Nationals and Davey Johnson will do just about anything they can to make sure they win the game this afternoon. "Just about" anything though. Asked if Gio Gonzalez would be available if necessary, Johnson defiantly said, "No. I need him for tomorrow's game."

Nats' Lineup For Game 4 vs St. Louis:

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Federal Baseball

You must be a member of Federal Baseball to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Federal Baseball. You should read them.

Join Federal Baseball

You must be a member of Federal Baseball to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Federal Baseball. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker