Davey Johnson spoke openly after Dan Haren's 3 1/3 inning outing against the Colorado Rockies about being concerned with the results the 32-year-old right-hander had been getting in recent starts as he continues to try to figure things out on the mound. "I'm a little concerned about him," the manager said, "When he pitches up he's in trouble. His cutter when he pitches up is more flat. I'm going to have a talk with him next time he throws and see if we can't do something to make things better for him."
"I don't want to speculate on what I'm thinking about right here," Johnson continued, "but I do have some concern." As for the possibility of an injury causing the issues? "I don't know if there's some physical problems or whatever," Johnson said, "but when he throws his side -- I think his side will be on Monday, there's going to be a bunch of guys coming to a workout here and I'll be one of them and I'll talk with him then, see if we can't come up with something that could help him."
Through 15 starts, the 11-year veteran is (4-9) with a 6.15 ERA, 5.08 FIP, 2.09 HR/9, 1.43 BB/9 and 7.35 K/9. Though the Nationals didn't provide any details, before Sunday afternoon's finale with the Rockies, word began to surface that the Nats would indeed place Haren on the DL:
Nationals expected to place Dan Haren on the DL today...tune in to the Manager's Report with Davey Johnson at 1:00 on Nats on Deck..106.7fm— Charlie Slowes (@CharlieSlowes) June 23, 2013
D.C. GM Mike Rizzo then confirmed the news in talks with reporters:
Mike Rizzo says Dan Haren will likely be put on the DL.— Adam Kilgore (@AdamKilgoreWP) June 23, 2013
According to Mr. Slowes, the Nationals radio man, Johnson told him the Nationals might turn to a new option to fill Haren's spot:
Ohlendorf is a candidate to start but Davey would like to keep him in the bullpen we could see someone we haven't seen before.— Charlie Slowes (@CharlieSlowes) June 23, 2013
More info when it's available...
Here's what Davey Johnson had to say on "The Manager's Show" with 106.7 the FAN In D.C.'s Charlle Slowes before today's game:
"He's such a great competitor. And he's an outstanding pitcher and his history, his pedigree, he's a great pitcher. He's always been great in the second half, but in lieu of some of his latest outings, it's apparent that he has a little shoulder weakness. And we're going to put him on the DL to let him recover a little bit and get right, because I definitely need him. He's a fine pitcher and he's going to help us a whole lot."
"He's throwing the cutter a lot and I always go back to the game he pitched against Atlanta. [He] went eight strong innings and was outstanding against a good-hitting ballclub and he made quality pitches throughout the whole game and I think just the inconsistency -- and in talking to Dan, he feels like he feels great for a couple innings then he'll have a bad inning in there. And I think a lot of it's -- last year the problem was his back. This year we don't have a problem with the back, but probably a little bit of tiredness in the shoulder, and we're going to correct that and get him right because we definitely need him."
"My job is always to do what's best for the player. If I do what's best for the player, it's going to best for the ballclub. And in this case, just a little rest, a little rehab and he should come back strong."
Replacement?: [Ross] Ohlendorf is a good candidate. But I really like him, what he brings to the bullpen, and I've had to move [Craig] Stammen into a more set-up role and I can use Stammen more often, and so probably leave Ohlendorf out there as good as he's pitched in a starting role and a great relief job he did yesterday, saved my whole pen, that was paramount yesterday, but we've got some interesting young arms in the minor leagues, we'll address that come Tuesday."
Someone new?: "There's some good reports on several guys, but we'll address that when the need comes."