Trea Turner’s 0 for 3 game on Monday afternoon left him 10 for 49 (.204 AVG) in 11 games since he returned from a 39-game absence as he healed from a broken right index finger.
Turner committed his fourth error in those 11 games in the eighth inning of the finale with the Miami Marlins, throwing high to first base, forcing Matt Adams to reach up to try for a catch he didn’t make.
“I think [Adams] got caught in-between,” Davey Martinez told reporters after two errors in two innings let the Marlins get out with a sweep-avoiding win in the final game of the four-game series in D.C.
“It hit his glove,” Martinez added. “Typically you say when the ball hits your glove it should be caught, but I think [Adams] got caught in-between whether to jump or stay on the base.”
Three of Turner’s four errors since he returned have been throwing errors, and he’s had to adjust his grip on the bat, which has led to a few swinging strikes on which the bat’s gone flying out of his hands. How much of that is to blame on rust? How much is the finger still not being 100%? And how long will it be until it heals if he’s not 100% yet?
“That’s a good question,” Martinez told a reporter who asked after Monday’s game.
“It’s going to take some time I think to heal. He says he feels great, and I believe him, he’s made some really good plays, but I think right now he’s — you’ve got to remember too, missing seven weeks and getting back in the swings of things, I think he’s played really, really well.
“He’s a guy that we need, and having him in the lineup helps us out tremendously.”
Does Turner look comfortable to his manager?
“Yeah, he does,” Martinez responded.
“Like I said, the throw he made there he just got underneath a little bit, but I mean it wasn’t a terrible throw.
“What would concern me is if he started throwing the balls up the line, cutting the balls, or letting the balls fade and bouncing balls, but he’s been accurate and that’s nice.”
Turner, for his part, said earlier on the homestand the errors were more glaring because they’ve happened in a short span since his return, and he talked about the fact that the Nationals are pressing at times as they try to get things turned around before it’s too late.
“I think in individual cases, sure, maybe guys are pressing here and there too hard,” Turner explained, “and whatever it may be, whether they had a good outing, bad outing, playing good defense, bad defense, whatever it is, I think guys are in different situations, but I think we need to put it behind us as fast as we can and relax, have fun and start enjoying each and every day.”
Winning three of four from the Miami Marlins this weekend was a good start, but the Nats have a test ahead of them in the two-game set with the second place Braves in Atlanta, GA, which starts at 7:05 PM EDT tonight in SunTrust Park.
“We’re playing well, we really are,” Martinez said on Monday afternoon. “It was unfortunate today we didn’t make two plays, but you know what, the boys are playing well and we’ll go to Atlanta feeling good about ourselves.”
For Turner, who has a .340/.377/.568 line against the Braves in his career, it might be a good time to get things going at the plate, though he has just a .254/.312/.380 line in SunTrust so far.