Anthony Rendon keeps hitting, even though nagging injuries have the 29-year-old infielder considering resting up over the break instead of attending his first career All-Star Game in Cleveland next week.
“He plays every day and it’s just the bumps and bruises of going out every day and playing,” Washington Nationals’ manager Davey Martinez told reporters over the weekend in Detroit, where Rendon went 5 for 13 with a double and two homers to wrap up an 8 for 24 road trip.
So this is how he hits when he’s banged up? And what exactly is wrong?
“There’s really no specifics, there’s just the daily grind and he’s sore,” Martinez explained.
“We’ve got to remember that he was hurt for a while, came back, and has been in the lineup ever since. And he wants to play, and I’ve talked to him a bunch of times about being smart, playing smart, know when you really have to get after it, know when you hit a fly ball and you don’t really have to go full speed. Just cause we definitely want to keep him on the field.”
Rendon has started 52 of 52 games since returning from a 10-game stint on the Injured List for a bone bruise on his left elbow on May 7th, with a .288/.376/.571 line over that stretch.
“Running him out there every day and keeping him healthy is the key,” Martinez said in Detroit. “I said this before, he’s the guy that makes our offense go, and he’s been huge lately.”
Rendon went just 1 for 7 in the first two games with Miami in the nation’s capital this week, but went 2 for 4 with a home run in the series finale with the Marlins, tying things up at 2-2 with his 20th of the season in the fourth and driving in the go-ahead run with an RBI single in the fifth inning of what ended up a 5-2 win.
“He’s a professional,” Martinez said after Thursday’s game, which started at 11:00 AM on the holiday. “He loves to play. He wants to play. I talked to him today about maybe giving him a day off today because of the 11:00 start, he wanted to play. But that’s who he is. He’ll work through these things, but I’ve said this before, he’s the constant in our lineup that makes things go, and today you saw it again.”
Rendon’s back in there tonight...