Kurt Suzuki took over for Yan Gomes in the bottom of the seventh on Saturday night, after the Washington Nationals’ skipper Davey Martinez hit for catcher Gomes with a runner on third and two out in a 5-2 game.
After an awkward throw to second base on a steal attempt by Rafael Ortega, Suzuki was noticeably uncomfortable behind the dish.
Trainer Paul Lessard and Martinez came out to talk to the catcher, but after they discussed it, Suzuki stayed on to finish out the inning.
Between the end of the seventh and top of the eighth, manager Davey Martinez talked to Suzuki again, however, and decided he was done for the night.
Martinez talked after the game about his concern for the veteran backstop.
“He threw the ball to second, and he felt a sharp pain,” the second-year skipper explained, after a 5-4 loss, “so I didn’t want to chance it. He wanted to hit, but I didn’t want to do that.”
Martinez didn’t have any additional info at that point.
“He’s going to get evaluated by the doctor,” Martinez said, “... it’s his right elbow, so we’ll know more — I don’t know anything right now, they left to go see a doctor.”
Suzuki spoke to reporters in SunTrust Park before the series finale on Sunday.
“Felt something in my elbow,” he said. “It happens, I guess, in baseball. Just some tingling, zings, but just a little sore today, but should be good.”
Asked about his level of concern, after feeling what he described as tingles and zings, Suzuki said it was, of course, a little concerning.
“But the doctor saw me and all that stuff, and just get some treatment and a little rest for a couple days and see how it feels and kind of take the next step.”
Suzuki said he had an MRI, but didn’t yet have the results before the finale in Atlanta.
“Yeah, I did one today, I’m not sure what the doctors — I don’t know if they read it yet, but we’ll see, hopefully it’s good.”
His manager too was choosing to think positively.
“I’m going to be optimistic and hope that it’s some kind of inflammation and nothing beyond that,” Martinez said, as quoted by MASN’s Byron Kerr.
“Until the doctor reads the MRI, we won’t know.”
The next step? Wait for the results, obviously. But Suzuki said he’d move forward for now.
“Just kind of get treatment and kind of take it day by day, take a couple of days off,” Suzuki explained.
“We have a day off tomorrow luckily enough and then Minnesota test it out and see how it feels. Obviously going to be smart about it.”
Reports after the series finale on Sunday ended up being relatively positive...
MRI for Kurt Suzuki’s right elbow was “clean” and he is day-to-day with inflammation.— Jesse Dougherty (@dougherty_jesse) September 8, 2019
Gomes started the fourth of four with the Braves, and ended up hitting two home runs, going 2 for 5 with two runs scored and two RBIs.