Though he was initially penciled in as part of the Nationals’ lineup for the series finale in Miami, Nelson Cruz was a late scratch.
After the third straight loss to the Marlins, Washington’s manager Davey Martinez told reporters the 41-year-old DH’s back locked up on him.
“His back tightened up on him,” Martinez explained.
“We’re going to get him an MRI tomorrow and see what’s going on. Hopefully it’s nothing, but we want to get him checked out.”
Cruz missed time earlier this season with lower back stiffness. Martinez was asked if the issue was more serious than the previous time.
“He just said he felt tight, and he couldn’t get loose when he was hitting in the cage, so we’d rather be safe than sorry,” the manager said.
In seven games so far in June, Cruz is 8 for 25 (.320/.433/.480) with a double, a home run, five walks, and seven Ks in 30 plate appearances, after he went 27 for 85 (.318/.379/.459) in the month of May.
He’s back in there for tonight’s game…
Swept - Status Update:
With three straight losses to the Marlins, the Nationals are now 1-8 in nine games with their NL East rivals this season. On the road, Davey Martinez’s club is 12-20 overall as they return to D.C. (where they’re 9-18 so far).
What did Martinez make of the ten-game road trip as a whole, on which the Nationals were 3-7?
“We lost some games, we lost tough games, yesterday was a tough one,” the Nats’ fifth-year skipper said.
“We just got to come back, and like I said, forget about what happens, and go 1-0 tomorrow. That’s all you can do, right?
“We’ve got to get some consistency, both out of the starting pitchers, out of our lineup, and we see signs they’re going to snap out of it, they’re going to hit, they’re going to continue to hit, and we’ve done it. We’ve hit some balls hard. We’re like one hit away. We’re one ground ball off the glove away from getting out of a big inning. But we’ve got to keep battling.
“Nobody is going to feel sorry for us, we know that, so we come back tomorrow and we’ll keep battling and try to go 1-0 tomorrow.”
HERE’S THE NATIONALS’ LINEUP FOR THE SERIES OPENER WITH THE BREWERS:
Friday Night Lights. #NATITUDE pic.twitter.com/6UoZHsFBaZ— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) June 10, 2022