Notes: Logan gets center field job
Outfielder's hot bat gives him edge over Langerhans
WASHINGTON -- It appears that the Nook Logan/Ryan Langerhans platoon is over -- at least for now. Manager Manny Acta, going with the hot hand, has decided that Logan will be the everyday center fielder.
The right-handed-hitting Logan started against Cardinals right-hander Kip Wells on Friday. Since the All-Star break, Logan is hitting .283 with a .353 on-base percentage and is 10-for-26 (.385) in the last eight games entering Friday's action. Langerhans, on the other hand, is 4-for-34 with one homer and five RBIs.
"Logan is patient at the plate and, obviously, he has been getting on base more," Acta said. "There is no question about getting the ball [in the outfield]. We really needed some more offense out of that spot."
Acta said that he would like to see Logan, who is hitting .244 for the season, bunt a little more for base hits.
"If he could drop a few more bunts, he'll be on his way and help himself," Acta said.
Langerhans hasn't been able to get out of his season-long slump. He has a .159 batting average, with five home runs and 20 RBIs.
Minor League news: Left-hander Ross Detwiler, the Nationals' first-round pick in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, pitched four shutout innings and gave up one hit against the Gulf Coast Dodgers on Friday afternoon. He struck out five and walked two.
General manager Jim Bowden said that Detwiler will be promoted and pitch for Class A Potomac sometime next week.
Draft news: Left-hander Jack McGeary, the sixth-round pick in this year's Draft, is in D.C. On Friday he took a tour of the city, including a stop at the White House, and will visit the Nationals on Saturday.
The Nationals are not close to inking McGeary to a professional contract, as McGeary said that he would not sign unless he was given first-round money.
McGeary was considered by many to be a first-round pick before the Draft, but he dropped considerably because the Nationals feel he will attend Stanford University.
In other news, Bowden said that the team continues to have dialogue with Josh Smoker's agent, Jamey Murphy, but the two parties are not close to an agreement. Smoker was the 31st pick in the 2007 Draft, and Bowden said that the team is willing to take an extra pick if Smoker does not sign. That pick would be 31b in next year's Draft.
"We want him here. We understand the business part of it, but if he's not here, at least we get the same pick next year," Bowden said. "We want to sign the player at fair market value."
Injury report: Right-hander Jason Bergmann (left hamstring tightness) is scheduled to begin rehabbing in the team's complex in Viera, Fla. He threw 25 fastballs in a bullpen session on Friday and didn't have any problems.
"Even though the mechanics weren't perfect, I felt pretty good," Bergmann said. "The leg doesn't hurt. My arm feels great. I just want to make sure that I'm back into game shape."
Reliever Jesus Colome (infection in his right buttocks) was seen doing running drills at RFK Stadium. He said that he is feeling much better and hopes to be activated in two weeks. He is heading to Viera on Friday night to prepare for his return.
Dr. James Andrews has found no structural damage in Jason Simontacchi's right elbow. Simontacchi was given a second cortisone shot and hopes to start throwing in four to six days.
Stat of the day: Entering Friday's action, opposing hitters are hitting .266 against Nationals pitching this year.
Did you know? Infielder Tony Batista leads the Nationals in pinch hits, with seven.
Coming up: The Nationals play the second game of their three-game series with the Cardinals on Saturday at 7:05 p.m. ET. Washington right-hander Joel Hanrahan will face St. Louis right-hander Joel Pineiro.
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.