Move to fifth appears to have helped Desmond

Move to fifth appears to have helped Desmond

PHILADELPHIA -- Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond finished Tuesday 6-for-16 (.375) with two homers and six RBIs since he was put in the fifth spot in the lineup on Saturday.

Desmond, who homered in a 5-2 win over the Phillies, said it helps that he is surrounded by good hitters, and that is the reason he didn't have to make adjustments when he made the switch from hitting leadoff.

"If the ball is in [the strike zone], it's good enough for me," Desmond said. "I'm not too picky. I'm just trying to put the barrel on the ball, with no real secret to my approach. I'm trying to get a pitch [I can hit]."

Desmond's eighth homer put him two off his career high, which he set in 2010.

Asked what he is doing differently at the plate, Desmond said, "I'm not trying to do anything differently. It's the same swing. I'm just getting more balls up in the air, I guess. There is no real secret to it. I'm not trying to do it. They are accidents."