The Washington Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo joined 106.7 The Fan’s Holden and Danny for the weekly Mike Rizzo Show. The topic of conversation this week revolved around Roger Bernadina’s game saving catch against the Houston Astros on Tuesday night and possible shifts in the batting order as injured players return to the lineup.
On Bernadina’s grab: “The importance of it probably outweighs the degree of difficulty but he ranged a long way, he had a great angle and he took a great route to it. A lot of guys will shy away from the impact of being against the wall but I think he knew what was at stake. It was either catch it or lose and I think he left it on the field and made a terrific catch.”
On Bernadina’s role with the team: “He’s a guy that can play all three outfield positions. He can steal you a base off the bench when you need a stolen base. He’s got some pop off the bench and he’s a guy that can play for an extended period of time which kind of separates him from those typical fourth and fifth outfielders because the guy has the skill level to play multiple games in a row. He gives Davey a lot of flexibility and maneuverability and he’s really come into his own in that role.”
On the return of Jayson Werth after his return wrist injury: “He’s looked good right out of the gate. As per usual, he’s got a great approach at the plate. Takes a lot of pitches, gets on base a lot. He’s another guy at the trade deadline that you add to a lineup that’s not only a run producer but a run scorer and a run preventer. He’s kind of that all-around, multifaceted player that we signed a couple of years ago. Just his presence in the lineup helps everyone in the lineup and his presence in the club house certainly makes us feel better about ourselves.”
On Werth’s place in the batting order after Ian Desmond returns from Injury: “Jayson will do anything to help the club win and if we decide that he’s better suited with this particular lineup and roster to lead off i’m sure he’d have absolutely no problem with it. I kind of see him as a run producing type of guy but he’s got a high on-base percentage for his career and could handle the lead off spot; has hit in the lead off spot before in his career…”
On what to expect from newly acquired catcher Kurt Suzuki: “You’re going to see a big energy guy, a defensive stalwart at the plate. He’s got an above average arm that’s accurate. He’s got quick feet and a quick release. He’s a contact bat that doesn’t strike out much and hoping to get some up-side and get him closer to the hitter he’s been for the last three years, double-digit homeruns at a really, really big ball park and a guy that’s a tough out. We feel that we got a guy for the long haul. He’s not going to be here just for this year. We got him under contract, he’s 28-years-old, he fits right in with the age of this ball club and the control factor was important for us. His first job and his first love is to put down the right fingers and if his pitching staff does a good job he kind of takes his offense secondary.”