WASHINGTON -- Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond is off to the best start of his career. Entering Monday's action, Desmond was 17-for-48 (.354) with an on-base percentage of .380.
A big reason Desmond is off to the good start is because he is no longer worried about his status on the team. If he goes hitless in a game, Desmond knows he is not going to be on the bench the next day.
In the past, Desmond found himself on the bench at times so that veteran players such as Cristian Guzman, Jerry Hairston Jr., Adam Kennedy or Alex Cora could get a start or two.
But before the 2012 season began, manager Davey Johnson told Desmond that he was going to play every day and hit at the top of the order, which was music to Desmond's ears.
"It's nice to know that if I go 0-for-5, I'm not going to come in the next day and need a break," Desmond said. "Davey understands that you don't have to come out and have success every single day. It's nice to have the support of the manager."