Washington Nationals: 5 predictions on Dave Martinez’s style
By Ron Juckett
NAMING A CAPTAIN
The Nats do not have an official captain.
There are clubhouse leaders and player leadership was a strong point during the Baker years. But, the time has come to give official responsibility to a named player.
Whether it is Scherzer, Zimmerman, Harper or Murphy, Martinez would be bold and smart to elevate a player into an internal accountable position. Yes, in this era of participation trophies, a team captain seems old fashioned. Do you think anyone on the New York Yankees questioned Lou Gehrig or Thurman Munson?
(Reggie Jackson, put your hand down.)
Sometimes, the attitude of a player knowing he can put a team on his back and carry them to greatness works. Clubhouses always have leaders, but Martinez can provide a spark and accountability buy outing one. Traditions need to start somewhere.
This is a bold move but, after four straight playoff whiffs, shaking up the order might work.
Watch to see how Martinez and his coaches get along with their team this spring. From his years with Madon in Tampa and Chicago, he knows you can overachieve when everyone is on the right page. The Cubs built swagger under Maddon and won a championship.
The mission in Washington is no different.