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Moore feeling more comfortable at plate

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WASHINGTON -- Nationals manager Davey Johnson said Friday night that he's going to stick with Tyler Moore in left field, giving the 26-year-old reserve more regular at-bats with the hope that they will get him back on track.

Before Sunday's rubber game against the Phillies, Moore said that plan is working so far. He had gone 1-for-3 in each of his past two starts, raising his season batting average from .121 to .139. In his Major League career, Moore is batting .236 as a starter, compared to .185 as a substitute.

"Yeah, it's always nice, just because my first at-bats of the season, it was brutal, I was struggling, coming in facing a tough lefty and then going 0-for-3 or whatnot, and then it just kept snowballing," Moore said. "But yeah, [Johnson's] got me in there against some righties and I'm feeling a lot better at the plate, and hopefully it continues."

Some players believe that the best way to fix something is to do nothing, but Moore is not one of them. He said he's made a conscious effort to hit for contact rather than power and make a little bit of progress at the plate every day.

"Pretty much, you just stay smaller, you get more comfortable," Moore said. "It's a 'walk before you can run' kind of deal, so that's the biggest thing for me, individually, in the last three or four games. I've done that, and I've felt a lot better at the plate."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashinNats. Tom Schad is an associate reporter for MLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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