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Nationals' Joe Ross hit by comeback liner, leaves start with "right heel contusion"

Washington Nationals' starter Joe Ross was hit on the right heel by a comeback liner in this afternoon's Grapefruit League game against the Detroit Tigers. Ross left the game with what was described as a "right heel contusion" by the Nationals.

Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

This afternoon in Space Coast Stadium, Washington Nationals' starter Ross took the mound against the Detroit Tigers in Grapefruit League action, but didn't last long.

Ross took a comeback liner off Nick Castellanos' bat off his right leg/ankle and quickly left the game after just 22 pitches following a visit from the team's trainer with what the Nationals later announced is a "right heel contusion".

According to reports from Lakeland, FL's Joker Marchant Stadium, Ross was in obvious pain on the mound after being hit by the liner and the Nationals didn't waste much time in getting Blake Treinen ready in the bullpen before the right-handed reliever took over on the mound for Ross.'s Mark Zuckerman described the incident in a quick report on Ross leaving the mound:

"Ross immediately began hopping up and down, then stood hunched near the mound as manager Dusty Baker, pitching coach Mike Maddux and head athletic trainer Paul Lessard jogged from the dugout to check on him.

The 22-year-old initially couldn't put any weight on the leg, though after a couple of minutes he was able to walk slowly all the way back to the visiting clubhouse in the right field corner without assistance."

The Nationals tweeted the following after the apparent injury:

The Nationals later announced that Ross suffered a "right heel contusion" and the 22-year-old right-hander will be reevaluated tomorrow.

Ross told reporters, including Zuckerman and Washington Post writer James Wagner that he was glad it wasn't a more serious injury:

More info when it's available...