Struggling Adam LaRoche turns to old teammate, Chipper Jones, for help with swing

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“I don’t get too fired up. It’s not like I enjoy it, but I don’t know what getting mad is going to do.”

So LaRoche sat with Jones in the corridor outside the Nationals’ clubhouse where the team’s video equipment was set up.

They talked about his swing while a loop of the first baseman played for the two former Braves teammates. Maybe they found something LaRoche hadn’t noticed on his own. Maybe the new voice would help.

“I talked to [Hall of Famer] Al Kaline one of my first years, and anything he had to say, I was like a sponge,” Johnson said. “He gave me a few tips, and they helped. Just talking to a great hitter, after you leave the conversation, you feel like you’re better. Every conversation I had with Ted Williams when he was managing the Senators, I’d go out and get two or three hits.”

The Nationals, and LaRoche, hoped that would be the case with Jones. And sure enough, LaRoche singled in his first at-bat Monday night and scored.

“The way I look at it is every day I wake up is a good day to get hot and start a new streak — hopefully a good one — and end this one,” LaRoche said. “That’s it. A lot of this game is like that. It can take one little flare, one swing. Get some confidence back.”

NOTES: Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos came off the disabled list Monday and the team optioned Jhonatan Solano to Triple-A Syracuse. Ramos did not start Monday, though, as Johnson said he was being “overly cautious” with the player’s now-healed left hamstring injury. … Chad Tracy got the start at third base Monday as Anthony Rendon got a day off. Johnson said that was mainly to allow Tracy, a key bench player, to get some regular at-bats.

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