I think I’ll start this article with something that everyone already knows. Manager of the Washington Nationals, Davey Johnson, has been doing this job for a very long time. Chances are no matter what the media or fans or possibly even his team thinks at times, he knows what is going on. With someone has seasoned as Johnson is I believe some of managing comes down to a gut level reaction to certain situations. That led Johnson to hold a team meeting before Saturday’s game. At least for one game it seemed to get some things moving on offense.
It isn’t a secret that the Nationals struggled during April. The fact that they are close to the Atlanta Braves in the National League East actually isn’t so much them catching the Braves as it is the Braves backing up to them. Still, a chance to take the lead in the division is something a good team should really jump towards. It seems that Johnson wondered why they weren’t hitting or even swinging like they should with such on the line.
I assume that was what led him to call the meeting though that is all assumption on my part. All he said was that he wanted to make sure and take some pressure off of the guys so they could hopefully go out and have fun doing what they should do. Though it might read like a very anticlimactic meeting with no yelling to speak of, I think it is just this type of meeting that the Nationals needed.
They have plenty of talent on the roster and do not lack for desire to win. Maybe all they needed was Johnson to get up, shrug his shoulders and say something like, “I don’t know why you guys aren’t playing better ball. Why don’t you relax a little bit and just go have some fun?” That is certainly not a quote but sums up the general attitude Johnson had about it. It worked on Saturday night. The Pittsburgh Pirates are plenty tough enough to make winning on Sunday very hard for them. We’ll see if their offensive surge carries over.