Monday, May 14, 2012

Morse, Wang moving closer to return

Though they've been decimated by injuries through the season's first six weeks, the Nationals are inching closer toward getting several key players back in uniform, headlined by Michael Morse.

Morse, out since Opening Day with an injury to his right lat muscle, will begin baseball activities tomorrow, including "dry swings" without a ball. The left fielder will start playing catch and plans to head to extended spring training in Viera, Fla., next week while the Nationals are on the road to continue his rehab.

At this point, Morse is shooting for a full return on June 8, when he could serve as designated hitter for back-to-back interleague series at Boston and Toronto.

"That would give him about a month before he'd have to throw from the outfield," manager Davey Johnson said. "Hopefully that injury would be healed and he's throwing well enough in the next three weeks to hit and then being able to play."

Wang, meanwhile, made another rehab start (his fourth overall) today for Class AAA Syracuse, pitching into the ninth inning. The veteran right-hander, out since mid-March with a hamstring strain, allowed four runs on 11 hits, but most encouraging to team officials was his increased stamina.

Wang probably is physically ready to return from the DL, but the Nationals intend to wait until his full 30 days on rehab are up -- his stint is set to expire on May 27 -- before making what is going to be a difficult decision regarding their rotation.

It's been assumed all along that No. 5 starter Ross Detwiler would surrender his spot to Wang, but when asked today about the possibility someone else could be moved to the bullpen, Johnson was noncommittal.

"Conceivably," the maanger said. "But again, you guys are answering questions that I don't have to address right now. I've got enough other problems without conjecture."


phil dunton said...

Davey Johnson will continue to take gas with this guy as the closer because he has no idea where he is throwing the ball. He's already cost the team at least four wins. Give Stammen the closer job until Storen is back.

Mr. Doggett said...

In on breath, says that he has complete confidence in his closer and then in the next breath admits that he has "enough problems." Aside from the obvious injuries what other "problems" can he be referring to. I'm not questioning Davey's decisions (in fact I think Henry needs to stay right where he is), just pointing out the irony in the way he is choosing to put out his fires.

Drew said...

I wish the Nats had been decimated by injuries. That would mean we'd lost one man in 10.

This has been much worse. I've never seen anything like it.

NatsFanJim said...

Flores gets no respect. By starting the rookie tonight, Davey sends the message: "Jesus, don't get comfortable; my real catcher isn't you!

MLB network reported the injury to Leon by saying, "The Nationals have to go back to minors to find themselves a catcher; they got to get a guy who can catch that staff." Hello? We already got a great catcher in Flores.

When Wang comes back, who is he gonna send to the bullpen? ERA-wise, the choice would have to be jackson -- which we know 'aint' gonna happen. With Detweiler in the top five in at least three or four areas, how can you move him to the bullpen? That would be both stupid and classless.

Compare Jackson and Lannan. Not much difference.

NatsFanJim said...

Great -- Davey pinch hits .125 nady for 2/3 Bernadina. I know he's in love with the much overrated left/right matchup -- but come on. meanwhile, it's a one run ball game, and a good manager is thinking of defensive replacements -- Nady for Bernadina doesnt fit that.

Davey is a complete idiot.

natsfan1a said...

Yeah, like when he played Tracy to get his bat going. How dumb was that? Wait... :-)

hokiepokster92 said...

Natsfanjim, I'm sure glad you're not managing this ballclub with both Tracy and Nady homering tonight. Also,Flores got the night off initially because Davey wanted to rest him after yesterday's 3 hour 45 minute ballgame in Cincy and tomorrow's 1:05 pm start. He wants Flores to catch Strasburg. Get your facts straight before you start flaming Davey, Bro!

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