Bowie Will Have to Wait A Bit Longer For His Turn

By Steve Yanda
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, July 9, 2007

Micah Bowie is unlikely to be ready to make his first turn in the starting rotation following the all-star break, Manager Manny Acta said yesterday. The decision to push back the left-hander was made to give him more time to rehabilitate his left hip. Tim Redding is scheduled to start July 17 against Houston in place of Bowie.

"The way it's looking right now, I don't think [Bowie] will be ready, but a lot of things can happen in eight days," Acta said.

Bowie is eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list July 17. Though the pitcher confirmed he did not think his hip would be healed enough to pitch then, he said he likely would come off the disabled list and wait until his next turn in the rotation.

Over the all-star break, Bowie said he will travel to Florida to rehab the hip with Nationals assistant athletic trainer Michael McGowan.

A Surprise Start

D'Angelo Jimenez received his first start of the season at second base yesterday, a welcome surprise for the player who typically spends game days waiting for one at-bat to perform his duties as a pinch hitter. Though he has only one hit in 20 at-bats for the Nationals this season, Jimenez said his approach at the plate does not change whether he starts or comes off the bench.

"It's no different; you're just only going to have one at-bat," Jimenez said. "You have to make adjustments and try to make good contact."

Acta said being thrown into live action after sitting on the bench is a difficult adaptation to make. "It's tough to get into a rhythm when you're only getting one at-bat a game," Acta said. "Some guys take longer to adjust to a pinch-hitting type of role."

Jimenez was called up from Class AAA Columbus on June 25 after shortstop Cristian Guzman went on the disabled list. His recall started a chain reaction of lineup moves. Felipe Lopez switched from second base to shortstop, and Ronnie Belliard moved from a pinch-hitting role to starting at second base.

Belliard said he understands the position Jimenez is in and believes, with time, he will work his way out of his current pinch-hitting funk. "He's getting good at-bats and getting ahead in the count," Belliard said. "He's just hitting it hard to where guys are."

© 2007 The Washington Post Company