The Washington Times - July 16, 2009, 07:55PM

Hmm, let’s see … one of Jim Riggleman’s points of emphasis during his hour-long meeting with the Nationals yesterday was to shore up what has been the majors’ worst defense. So naturally, the Nats find themselves trailing the Cubs 1-0 thanks to a Ryan Zimmerman throwing error.

Can we agree once and for all that the manager has nothing to do with a team’s defensive play?


Zim’s third-inning error — his 13th of the season — looked a lot like many of his previous ones. Koyie Hill, the Cubs’ No. 8 hitter, hit a slow hopper to third. Zimmerman charged in and to his left, picked up the ball with plenty of time and fired well over Nick Johnson’s head and into the stands. Hill wound up on second, moved to third moments later on a sac bunt and then scored when Ryan Theriot lined an 0-2 breaking ball from John Lannan into left field for a double.

Can we also agree that the manager has nothing to do with a team’s ability (or inability) to get a runner in from third with one out?

The Nats pulled that feat off for the umpteenth time in the bottom of the third. Despite Alberto Gonzalez’s one-out triple to right, Lannan struck out and then Nyjer Morgan grounded out to second to end the inning and leave the runner stranded.