Washington Nationals: 5 story lines for Spring Training

WEST PALM BEACH, FL - MARCH 7: Pablo Sandoval
WEST PALM BEACH, FL - MARCH 7: Pablo Sandoval /
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washington nationals
washington nationals /


Although you hope new skipper Dave Martinez has met his new team, how they mesh together is worth watching the next few weeks.

As mentioned earlier, Bob Henley is the lone returning coach. Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg and the rest of the pitchers will learn from Derek Lilliquist. Kevin Long takes his immense talents helping Washington develop a speed game with Trea Turner and Adam Eaton while getting maximum production from Harper, Murphy, Ryan Zimmerman and Anthony Rendon.

Outside of the usual in-game wind sprints and endless videos of bunt fielding, how much will the focus go on fundamentals? Will we see pitchers slotted eighth in the lineup early? Although Martinez and his staff are baseball lifers with a collective chip on their shoulder, they have yet to work together as a unit.

Considering how popular Baker was in the clubhouse, and revered in the sport, Martinez has his work cut out for him. There is legitimate pressure from the start. His early handling of the press has gone well. Now, it is time to pull everything together and prepare for the grueling marathon ahead.

Do not bet against him or the staff. They are ready. No matter what the standings say, this season will not be dull.