The Washington Nationals currently sit at 5 wins and 9 losses so far in the Grapefruit League Spring Training camp. The Nationals are coming off of their 2019 campaign where they claimed the franchise’s first World Series title against the Houston Astros. According to Manager Dave Martinez, he will err on the side of caution during the 2020 camp to keep his players healthy for the upcoming regular season. “We are trying to be very cautious with these guys and not take any chances,” said Martinez. The Nationals will begin their 16th season with an Opening Day match-up on March 26th against the New York Mets at Citi Field.
RHP Max Scherzer battled back pains throughout last season and was sidelined after Game 4 of the World Series due to unbearable spasms which also extended to his neck. Scherzer has since made mechanical adjustments to his pitching that has alleviated the issue. Manager Martinez intends to keep him healthy and claims that Scherzer is now doing good.
“He’s getting his work in and we’re gonna build him up slow and careful, next outing may go to 65/70 pitches, we will see. Right now we’re doing like 15 pitch increments…he’s working a lot on just locating all his pitches. He does everything with a purpose, today he came out and did a full round of batting practice and that’s his preparation for the season, he wants it to feel like it’s game day for him and he’s gonna do everything he normally does and get it all in,” said Martinez.
Missing In Action
In addition, Eric Thames had been missing in action last week reportedly due to tight calf muscles, but he returned to the line-up this past Saturday, March 7 and then returned the field Sunday.
Martinez said, “he had a tight left calf earlier and so as I said before, I’m gonna come at everything with caution. He’s now swinging and taking ground balls and everything. I just had told him there was no sense in pushing it and we will get him in there soon.”
The Nationals will have their next match-up on Tuesday, March 9 against the Miami Marlins at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium.
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