Notes: Detwiler and Maxwell reach bigs
Two prospects will likely sit and learn for most of September
WASHINGTON -- Nationals left-hander Ross Detwiler and center fielder Justin Maxwell reported to the big league team on Tuesday afternoon.
Manager Manny Acta reiterated that the two rookies will basically watch and learn during the last month of the season. Detwiler will work out of the bullpen, while Maxwell will become a pinch-hitter and defensively replacement. Washington wants to see what players such as pitchers Jason Bergmann and Matt Chico and outfielders Wily Mo Pena and Nook Logan can do in starting roles.
"They know what they're here for," Acta said about Detwiler and Maxwell. "We're going to do the best we can to put them out there when the situation is right for them and for us. That's mainly the reason why both of them are here -- seeing how things are done up here, and how guys handle stuff, and how to go about their business at a big league level.
"It's a big difference from here to the Minor Leagues. They'll get their feet wet, then going forward they'll already have that behind them."
Detwiler, who will wear No. 29, was the sixth overall pick in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, and went a combined 2-2 with a 3.51 ERA in nine appearances -- eight of which were starts -- for Class A Potomac and the Rookie-level Gulf Coast Nationals.
Maxwell, who was Washington's second selection in the 2005 First-Year Player Draft behind Ryan Zimmerman, combined to hit .281 with 27 home runs, 83 RBIs and 35 stolen bases this season for Potomac and Class A Hagerstown. Maxwell is the only player in Minor League Baseball to record at least 25 doubles, 25 home runs and 25 stolen bases in 2007.
Before the game, Detwiler worked out of the bullpen, while Maxwell, who is known as J-Max to his new teammates, put on a show in batting practice. He was hitting line drives all over the place. It prompted general manager Jim Bowden to say, "He has come a long way. His swing is short and sweet."
Both players said they understood their news roles and look forward to getting some games.
"They said, 'Just be ready to play every day,'" Maxwell said. "If you get a chance to play, it would be gravy. Just take it all in and learn. Learn as much as you can. They said, 'Get your feet wet.'"
"I'm not expecting too much," said Detwiler. "I'm just kind of getting my feet wet up here. I'm going to be in the bullpen. Maybe a few innings here and there."
On strike: Shortstop Felipe Lopez announced on Tuesday that he is no longer talking to the media. The relationship between the two parties became strained after Lopez made three critical errors in the last four games of the recent road trip.
After the last game of the road trip, a reporter told Lopez that he looked unsure of himself on the field. Lopez immediately ended the interview and has not talked to the media since.
Welcome back: Outfielder Ryan Langerhans is back in the big leagues, and said he learned his lessons well with Triple-A Columbus. He pointed that he is more patient at the plate. Before Langerhans was sent down, Bowden told him it appeared he was swinging at the first pitch.
Langerhans was more patient in Columbus. He hit .275 and had a .351 on base percentage. He said he purposely took two strikes to get a better read of pitches.
Stats of the day: Entering Tuesday's action, Nook Logan is hitting .327 (17-for-52) in 23 games against National League East Clubs.
Did you know: Right-hander Chad Cordero has saved 30 or more games in two out of the last three seasons. He saved 47 games in 2005 and 30 this season.
Coming up: The Nationals play the third game of a three series against the Marlins on Wednesday night at 7:05 ET. Washington right-hander Tim Redding (3-5, 3.27 ERA) will face Florida right-hander Sergio Mitre (5-8, 4.57).
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.