Detwiler cherishes chance to play in front of father

Detwiler cherishes chance to play in front of father

ST. LOUIS -- Father's Day was extra special for pitcher Ross Detwiler as the Nationals faced the Cardinals in the final game of a 10-game road trip.

Detwiler grew up in Wentzville, Mo., and pitched for Holt High, which is 45 miles west of Busch Stadium.

The 28-year-old lefty was able to spend the first couple of nights in St. Louis at home, and he was be able to see his dad, Rick, before and after the game Sunday. Detwiler doesn't remember the last time he saw his dad on Father's Day.

"A couple of years ago when we were playing in the playoffs, I got to be here for my dad's birthday too, so it's pretty special being around for that," Detwiler said before pitching an inning in the Nats' 5-2 loss to the Cards on Sunday. "My oldest brother has two sons; they're going to be at the game. My other brother has a son and daughter who are coming. The whole family will be there on Sunday."

Detwiler didn't know how many tickets he will end up buying for Sunday's game. The list was still growing.

"I don't think I want to know," Detwiler said. "I'm playing for free this trip."

Even though he may end up buying a whole section of tickets, it's worth it for Detwiler to be able to spend the day with the people who supported him along the way, especially his dad.

"Having the older brother, I was always around the field," Detwiler said. "My dad always made sure I was outside, outdoors doing something, and we would always watch baseball games together. So as I grew up, I was always around baseball, so I learned to love the game and he always kept me around the field, whether it be a Little League field or watching a game on TV or whatever. We were just trying to watch it and pick out the things that you need to make yourself a better player."

Joe Harris is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.