Dusty Baker outlined his plans for Trea Turner this weekend when he spoke to reporters, including MASN's Byron Kerr, in Cincinnati before the series opener.
Turner is up for now, but only until Ryan Zimmerman returns from the Paternity List after the birth of his second child on Thursday. Turner got a start at second, batting second, last night, but he's only up for the next few days.
"It’s just a weekend thing," Baker said. "Unless Zim has another baby in the meantime. It’s a weekend thing.
"[Turner] was our best choice to do a number of things to help us. He’s going to play today, [Daniel Murphy] is playing first base today and then tomorrow we’re going Big [Clint] Robinson the next couple days."
With Robinson at first this afternoon, Murphy shifts back to second, Danny Espinosa remains at short and Turner is on the bench.
"I considered possibly playing Trea at short one day but we got a day off yesterday and a day off the day after this series so health and being tired is certainly not an issue when you have that many days off in a short period of time. He’s going to do whatever it takes to help us here win as many games as we can."
If/when Turner's brought up for good, the Nationals will have a decision to make, but for now they appear comfortable sticking with Espinosa at short, in spite of his current .197/.291/.335 line.
He has, however, hit six home runs in 121 PAs over the last month-plus after hitting just one in 80 PAs in April.
"Danny Espinosa his batting average isn’t high but his home runs and his RBIs (are)," Baker explained, as quoted by MASN's Kerr. "He’s certainly playing good defense."
Baker said he assured Turner that his time will come and said he's been where Turner is at right now. But for now there's no room on the major league roster.
Here's the lineup for tonight's game with the Reds in Great American Ball Park: