Thursday, June 6, 2013
Nats-Mets postponed, rotation adjusted
[Updated 9:57 p.m.]
By Chase Hughes
Thursday’s series finale between the Nationals and Mets was postponed due to heavy rain, with a makeup date set for July 26. The two teams will play a doubleheader with the first game at 1:35 p.m. and the second, regularly scheduled matchup at 7:05 p.m.
The unexpected day off gives Washington the opportunity to adjust their pitching plans for the weekend. The Nats were planning to call up veteran Ross Ohlendorf from Triple-A to pitch Saturday, but now don’t have to.
Gio Gonzalez moves over to pitch Friday against the Twins with Nathan Karns set to pitch on Saturday. Washington can also now keep lefty reliever Xavier Cedeno on the roster.
"With the number of guys we have on the DL, this is a welcome call,” Johnson said. “And then not having to add somebody else, another starter, and then we've got an off-day on Monday. So we would have just really made a bunch of guys move around. This is much better. So I'm happy about it."
The Nationals were planning to pitch Ohlendorf only because both Stephen Strasburg and Ross Detwiler are on the disabled list. If Johnson could choose, he wouldn’t mind the game on Friday to be rained out as well.
“This is good. And even one more rainout would be better,” he said. “That'll probably set my pitching up to be even better, because Det and Stras will be coming back.”
Strasburg was officially placed on the 15-day disabled list Thursday, retroactive to June 1, with a right lat strain. He is eligible to return on June 16 when the Nats are on the road against Cleveland.
Johnson said Strasburg will throw a simulated game on Tuesday in Colorado. He threw on Thursday and is progressing well.
"He went out early and he was throwing,” Johnson said. “He threw a lot before [Steve McCatty] got there. He was feeling real frisky, and Cat had to cut him short. But he's chomping at the bit to get back on the rubber.”