Washington Nationals: Adam Lind close to making pinch hit history


Adam Lin, who was one of the Washington Nationals top offseason signings, is on his way to making some franchise history

When the Washington Nationals signed Adam Lind this offseason to a $1 million contract, everyone liked the signing because he was a good insurance policy for Ryan Zimmerman in case he got injured. Lind has played left field while Jayson Werth has been out, but his best value to the Nats this year has been off the bench.

On Monday night, Lind snapped a 0-for-13 stretch at the plate with a go-ahead pinch-hit RBI single in the bottom of the eighth against the Marlins. With that hit, he is now 13-for-33 (.394) in those situations this year with one home run and ten RBI’s.

With those excellent numbers, Lind is on the verge of setting a couple of Washington Nationals record. He is one pinch-hit away from tying Tony Batista (2007) and Daryle Ward (2006) for the most pinch-hits in a single season in Nats history. Also, he is one home run away from breaking that record (Ward, Stephen Drew, and Chris Heisey have three).

Lind has been a positive addition to the Washington Nationals since Opening Day when he hit the go-ahead home run in the seventh inning against David Phelps. He does have six home runs and 26 RBI’s when he starts games, but he has become the go-to guy on the bench for Dusty Baker.

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This year, it’s safe to say Lind has been one of the best pinch-hitters in all of baseball. His ten RBI’s are second in all of baseball behind Pat Valaika of the Colorado Rockies (11) and he is tied with four others for the league lead.

In addition to the home runs, Lind does a great job of getting into deep counts against opposing pitchers. As a pinch-hitter, he averages about four pitches per plate appearances, which is about the same to what he does a starter.

If Lind does break some Nats pinch-hit records, it will fly under the radar nationally. However, he could be the one that could gets the big hit in the postseason to help the Nats finally win a round. In the seventh inning or later, he’s hitting .380 (30-for-79) with five home runs and 22 RBI’s.

Next year, Lind has a $5 million mutual option for next season and the Washington Nationals would probably be happy right now to have Lind at that dollar amount for next year. The question will be whether or not Lind thinks he can get more money on the open market.

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For a team that uses a eight-man bullpen, Lind’s bench production has been critical for the Washington Nationals this year. He makes any fan feel confident that he will get the big hit late in the game when he comes to the plate.