“He’s got a significant strain in his hamstring, so he’s going to miss some time,” Nationals’ manager Davey Martinez said right off the bat in his pregame Zoom call with reporters in the nation’s capital this afternoon.
He was, of course, talking about Washington’s left fielder, Kyle Schwarber, who injured his right hamstring running around first base on a single early in Friday night’s game with the Dodgers.
“It’s unfortunate,” Martinez added, “but I talked to him, I just got done talking to him, and he’s in good spirits.
“He said he’s going to work really hard to get back as soon as possible, and I told him, ‘Hey, just be ready. We still have plenty of good season left, so just get yourself ready.”
Schwarber, 28, hit 16 HRs in his last 22 games (with a .325/.404/.938 line in 94 PAs over that stretch) before Friday night, helping the Nationals to a 19-9 run in June, that got them back into the race in the NL East.
Martinez wasn’t willing to offer any sort of timetable for a potential return by Schwarber.
“I don’t like putting timetables on guys like this,” he explained, “... because some guys heal faster than others, but it won’t be a 10-Day IL, he’s going to miss some time, so like I said, I talked to him today, he’s upbeat, and he said he’s going to put all the work in to get back as soon as possible.”
Martinez didn’t offer much insight into their plans to bolster the outfield corps either, though Yadiel Hernández was in Nationals Park before tonight’s game.
“[Gerardo] Parra is going to play left field today, we’re looking at different options right now.
“So we’ll come up with some kind of variable here in the next couple of hours.
“We just got the MRI results not too long ago, so we’ll definitely figure something out, but we got to keep playing baseball.
“It’s unfortunate that as hot as he was and how much he helped us win over the last month, we have to do without him for a while, so the other guys definitely have to step up.”
Schwarber told reporters in an on-field interview that he is going to be back as soon as he can, and Martinez noted that he’d worked extremely hard when the outfielder suffered a knee injury when both were in Chicago in 2016, and Schwarber returned faster than anyone had anticipated.
“This guy’s worked diligently,” Martinez said. “They pretty much wrote him off for the whole year, and ... he came back and helped us tremendously in the postseason and in the World Series. But that’s the kind of guy he is, and he told me today, he said, ‘I’m going to be back as soon as possible, don’t worry, I’ll be back.’”