PITTSBURGH -- Nationals outfielder Nate McLouth had mixed emotions when he played in Thursday's game against the Pirates. He started his Major League career in Pittsburgh in 2005 and stayed with the team until the middle of the 2009 season when he was traded to the Braves.
McLouth calls making his Major League debut against the Nationals at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium his biggest highlight as a member of the Pirates.
"[PNC] is a neat place," McLouth said. "I really enjoyed my time. I love the stadium. It's one of my favorites. I was lucky enough to play here a few years. It's where I started my Major League career."
Now, McLouth is trying to help the Nationals win games. He is clearly an excellent outfielder. McLouth will go through a wall to make a catch like he did against the Dodgers earlier this month.
"That's preventing runs and being reliable behind your pitcher," McLouth said. "It's just as much a part of the game as the offensive side. You try to keep it a completely separate thing because your pitchers are counting on you. It's something I work on a lot, too."
From an offensive standpoint, the hits are starting to fall for McLouth. In his last 10 games entering Friday's action against the Pirates, McLouth is 8-for-27 [.296]. Overall, he is hitting .154.
"It's going to come," McLouth said about his hitting. "I'm going to keep grinding and keep working hard until it still comes."
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.