Carl Edwards Jr. is doing well as a loyal citizen

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Karl Edwards Jr.’s debut this season for the Washington Nationals probably didn’t go the way he envisioned.

On the day he was called up to the majors, he gave up three runs in the sixth inning against the New York Mets with leading Washington on tour, eventually earning the loss. After the match, Edwards made a promise.

“I know one thing, and one thing is a fact: It won’t happen again,” Edwards said. He said on May 10.

So far, Edwards has fulfilled that pledge: He hasn’t allowed running in 12 games since then. He only allowed two hits during this stretch. He still hits a six – but also hits a 12.

Major league success is nothing new to Edwards. He was part of the Bulls that helped the Chicago Cubs win the 2016 World Championship and take the win in Game 7. But after appearing in 131 games with the Cubs over the next two seasons, Edwards was traded to the San Diego Padres in the trade. Deadline in 2019. He played five games for the Seattle Mariners in 2020 and seven more in 2021 between defending champions Atlanta Braves and the Toronto Blue Jays, dealing with abdominal and oblique injuries.

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Edwards signed with the Nationals on a minor league deal in February. When the season began in Class AAA Rochester, the Braves gave him a World Series ring before a minor league game even though he scored only one for the team.

“It feels different because I was with the Cubs and it was a 108-year curse,” Edwards said Thursday of receiving the Ring of the Braves. “Arrived to [the Braves] And tell them thank you but, you know, I wasn’t there.”

Another opportunity with Washington brought him together with some familiar faces – Dave Martinez and merchandising coach Jim Hickey – who worked with him while he was in Chicago.

Both Martinez and Hickey said they knew Edwards would be an important arm if he could stay healthy and bombard the strike zone. He wasn’t on the team’s opening day roster, but when he gave up one run in 14 runs in Rochester, the Nationals gave him a chance.

So far in the majors, although the sample size is small, he threw 53.2 percent of his pitches in the area; The Major League average is 48.5%. His success within the zone has created his stadiums outside of it — he’s got hitters to connect with 65.4 percent of pitches outside the zone, 7 percent above the league average.

“When we were in Chicago, Joe Maddon was convinced that, at some point, he’d be closer and all he had to do was get into the attack zone,” Hickey said. “And you can see, when he’s in the strike zone, it’s really hard to hit him.”

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Edwards blends fastball and natural cutting motion of up to 96mph with a curveball. He’s also added a change to his arsenal this year. It’s always been a field that Edwards could throw, but he didn’t decide to start using it for games until this year.

Hickey said the pitch acts almost like a diver as he throws him at 90 mph and described the pitch as a “weapon to induce balls” which in turn helps keep his descending sprint.

“Two, three, four years ago, he was going to look for two [or] Three strokes, and it would have been 23 pitches, 24 pitches,” Hickey said. So [the change-up has] He made them somewhat more efficient, but he also made himself more efficient with better hits.”

Edwards quickly became one of Martinez’s most trusted analgesics. On Saturday with the team trailing by one margin, Martinez said he called on luck to see if Edwards Jr. could go in and maintain the deficit. Edwards agreed to enter and offer, although Martinez had planned not to use it because he had made so much lately. Citizens He won the game in the end.

Aside from his performances on the court, Hickey said he saw a new level of focus from Edwards which came naturally to the ball player as he grew up.

“I think you see a little bit of maturity in Karami, as a person,” Hickey said. “He was the 2016 world champion, and an integral part of this team, for being in the minor leagues. So it gives him a little perspective.”

Hickey said some players take being in the majors for granted, believing they will be in the league for 10 years when they reach the majors at a young age.

Edwards said he learned a lot since he was a junior bowler of the Cubs. But for him, his success boils down to enjoying himself and not worrying about the outcome. If you don’t go his way, it will reset the next day.

“Just go out there and enjoy playing the game,” Edwards said of his style. “Just don’t take anything for granted. That’s all we can do. It’s just so much we can control and I just control what I can control and let everything else play out by itself.” [out]. “