Originally written on The Nats Blog  |  Last updated 11/13/14
Picimg_mlb_mar_03_5540
  Throughout the offseason, The Nats Blog will look back at every player’s 2012 season to summarize and analyze his performance, and we’ll look ahead to his possible role in 2013. We’ll go from #1 Steve Lombardozzi all the way to #63 Henry Rodriguez with about two posts per week until Spring Training. Enjoy. If someone told you that a player who committed 57 errors and recorded a slash-line of .260/.303/.375 between 2010 and 2011 would be nominated for a Gold Glove, win a Silver Slugger, be selected to play in the All-Star Game, and potentially be the Washington Nationals’ MVP for the year they recorded the best record in baseball, you probably would have flatly called that person crazy. But that is exactly the road that shortstop Ian Desmond has taken with the Nationals, from his first two full seasons in the majors to the season that earned him a GIBBY nomination for Breakout Hitter of the Year. Of the Nationals qualified hitters, Desmond claimed the highest batting average (.292), slugging percentage (.511), most stolen bases (21) and fewest strikeouts (113).  Aside from the strikeouts, which ticked up slightly from 2010 but were significantly lower than 2011, those numbers were all also career-bests for Desmond through a complete season. He also notched career-bests for runs scored (72), doubles (33), home runs (25) and RBI (73). And the list of accolades goes on. Desmond was the only National to record a 20-20 season, despite being put on the DL with an oblique injury for nearly a month, and in perhaps one of his most distinguishing contributions to the team last season, Desmond was the Nationals’ most reliable hitter through the playoffs (going 7-for-19). Only Ryan Zimmerman recorded better numbers than he did with a comparable number of postseason at-bats. Desmond’s proclivity to swing at the first pitch drew criticism from some who wanted to see him be more patient – he only walked 30 times all year – but as his success at the plate became more consistent, the critics became content to just watch as Desi hit three home runs and 11 doubles, and batted in 12 runs on the first pitch. Desmond finished the year with an overall slash-line of .292/.335/.511, and was owner to several clutch moments, like his come-from-behind walk-off home run that broke the Nationals out of a five-game losing streak on May 2. The photo of Desmond leaping into a ecstatic group of celebrating teammates came to define the type of exciting season the Nationals played in 2012 and highlighted the impact Desmond had on DC’s favorite team. Next year: At 27 years old, Desmond has plenty of years left in what promises to be an exciting career, and at least three of those years will be played in Washington. With Desmond under team control until 2016, Nationals fans can expect to see many more exciting moments produced by talented shortstop. Up next: #21 Xavier Nady  
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Three quarterbacks who could be traded this offseason

Wolves trade Corey Brewer to the Rockets

Yankees trade Prado to Marlins for Eovaldi in 5-player deal

Brandon Browner fined $8K for throwing Brandon Gibson to turf

Report: Sharper, NFLers called spiked drinks 'horny juice'

Rex Ryan: My wife could coach Tom Brady

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jim Harbaugh won in laser tag by 'hunting' 10-year-old kid

Eddie Lacy is ‘very blind,’ refuses to wear goggles

Michael Phelps pleads guilty to DUI, gets probation

NFL scouts not in love with Amari Cooper?

Report: No teams interested in trading for Lance Stephenson

It is not Chip Kelly's fault if Eagles miss playoffs

Video: Swaggy P elbows Steven Adams in throat, gets ejected

Video: Grizzlies buy car for assistant who had his stolen

Video: LeBron takes pass to the face from Dion Waiters

New video of Ray Rice incident emerges

President Obama calls James Franco “James Flacco”

NBA games of the weekend: Rondo's Dallas debut, Bulls-Grizz

Tuscaloosa students will have two days off if Bama plays in National Championship

Brady scares the **** out of his teammates celebrating

Longhorn Network’s yule log? Five hours of BEVO

Will a Chiefs WR finally catch a TD in Week 16?

Jon Lester and the Cubs

The Toronto Raptors reveal their new logo

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Three quarterbacks who could be traded this offseason

Jon Lester and the Cubs

Report: NFL players used 'horny juice'

Top 10 worst NBA related commercials of all-time

Phelps gets probation for DUI

NFL coaches on hot seat in Week 16

The Roy Williams-Terrell Owens horse collar turns 10

Most underpaid NFL players in 2014

Gronk jokes about Brady compliment

In Matt Kemp, did the Dodgers find a pigeon in Padres?

Why the Saints are legit playoff threat

Impact of U.S.-Cuba relations on MLB

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.