Daniel Murphy wasn’t the only one not hitting in Milwaukee, but the Nationals’ veteran second baseman had a rough weekend, going 2 for 13 with three walks and seven Ks in four games. Murphy was also coming off one of his slower months since he signed with Washington.
In 25 games and 92 plate appearances in August, the 32-year-old infielder posted a .263/.348/.438 line with five doubles, three home runs, nine walks and 16 Ks, more strikeouts than he’s put up in any single month in the last two seasons.
Then he went 3 for 5 with a double and a home run last night in the series opener in Miami. That’s more Murphy-like.
“Everybody gets out of sync sometimes,” Dusty Baker said after the Nationals’ 7-2 win.
“Everybody says hitting is the hardest things to do, and when you don’t hit people ask what’s wrong. Just sometimes you hit balls hard, like he hit a couple balls hard in Milwaukee, and Murph is going to hit, it’s just a matter of him getting back into sync, and he works hard at it, and he analyzes his swing along with Jacque [Jones] and [Rick Schu], so, Murph’s fine.”
Baker was asked if Murphy gets down when he’s in a slump, or if there is a noticeable change in his demeanor.
“Not really, I don’t think he gets down,” Baker said. “He might be down, but you never know it, because he’s making outs, and he’s still pulling for everybody else. That’s a good teammate.”
“Murphy spoiled us all, you know what I mean,” Baker continued. “We expect him to hit all the time, and nobody hits all the time, and so other than that last span, that last couple weeks, Murph’s been hitting for six.. nine... eight of the ninth months he’s been here.”
After last night’s game, Murphy has a .333/.384/.571 line in 268 games and 1,103 plate appearances with the Nationals since he signed a 3-year/$37.5M deal with Washington before the start of the 2016 campaign.
Murphy is back at second and batting third in the Nationals’ lineup for the second of three with the Marlins in Miami.