Holden and Danny were joined Thursday by fill-in Washington Nationals closer Tyler Clippard, who talked how unfortunate it was to see friend and former teammate Joel Peralta labeled ‘a cheater’ as well as how frustrating it was to get passed up for the closing role so many times here in Washington.
Clippard who is perfect as the closer this year for the Nats, is also roommates with injured closer Drew Storen and was asked if it was awkward at home at all after being so successful filling in for Drew.
“We’re real good friends and we’re pulling for each other. We’re all pulling for the same goal. We’re all on the same page.”
Clippard would not reveal what the team’s plans were when asked to elaborate on if that page entails him staying on as the closer when Storen returns from elbow surgery or moving back into a setup man situation.
Tyler Clippard has been passed up for the fill-in closer role plenty of times before during his time here in D.C. and when asked, admitted it was very frustrating for him to be glossed over so many times.
“Of course. I think it’s just the nature of the game. Ever since I got here in Washington as a reliever I felt like I could do the role as a closer. It was just a matter of getting the opportunity. And yea, there was some things that happened along the way that I felt like I could have stepped in and maybe gotten a couple chances to close some games and that was frustrating, but at the same time it was a motivational tool.”
At 39-27, the Nats are far more successful at this point in the season than they have been any other year since their inception here in Washington. Clippard was asked if in 2008 he would be on such a winning Nationals roster performing at such a high level personally by 2012.
“If you would have asked me that in 2008 I would have looked at you upside down. I didn’t think this was going to be in my future at all. But that’s the great thing about baseball. You never know how your career is going to progress.”
Tyler told Holden and Danny that he was very good friends with Joel Peralta, in fact, when he was here in 2010 Peralta was one of his favorite teammates. This must have made it bitter sweet for Clippard to see his friend ejected from the game Tuesday night after umpires discovered pine tar in Peralta’s glove.
“I wish it didn’t happen because I like Joel. Ultimately the great thing about being a player in that, we didn’t have to make that decision. It wasn’t up to us. We called him out on it and he was cheating and that was kind of the bottom line.”
As Holden and Danny cannot make it through a serious interview without asking questions that evoke a certain levity, other random notes include: Tyler Clippard doesn’t wear his glasses around town, he will no longer see “Dumb and Dumber 2” now that Jim Carrey has reportedly dropped out of the film, and he has given himself the superlative as ‘best dancer’ on the Nationals.