Despite rain-shortened rehab game, Morse “felt great”

WOODBRIDGE, Va. - Despite a rain-shortened game, Nationals outfielder Michael Morse was able to get two plate appearances in for high Single-A Potomac Nationals in their game against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans Wednesday night at Pfitzner Stadium.

Morse walked and struck out, finishing 0-for-1 in a pair of opportunities, before the rain arrived and suspended the game in the top of the fifth with two outs. Potomac was leading 3-0.

Morse said he “felt great” and it was still a worthwhile experience to get back in the batter’s box.

“I felt good at the plate,” Morse said. “The guy was throwing hard. I saw the ball really good. A couple more at-bats and I should be fine.”

He actually took more swings in pregame, launching close to a half dozen balls over the fence.

“Batting practice felt really good,” Morse reported. “I was out here earlier and hitting off the curveball machine on the field. The last thing that comes before you get your swing is the timing. Right now I am just trying to get my timing off the pitchers and that is it.”

Even though Morse was listed as the designated hitter, he has thrown a lot every day in a throwing program.

“I start out at 60 feet, 90 feet, 100 feet and then (go to) 120 feet,” Morse said. “I am throwing more now than I did ever in my life. The ball is coming out nice and easy. I don’t feel any pain or nothing. If there is a positive out of all this my throwing mechanics are pretty sound.”

Tuesday’s suspended contest will be picked up in the fifth inning Wednesday at 6:05 p.m. Then, the regularly scheduled game will follow and be only seven innings. Morse believes he will play in both games.

“(It will be the) same kind of thing, I will throw tomorrow before the game,” Morse said. “I hope (I can play in the field Wednesday). It is up to them.”

If Morse had the choice, he would like to play left field or shortstop. Of course, that is for general manager Mike Rizzo to decide.

Overall, Morse felt the rehab game was positive, even though he saw only a dozen pitches.

“For not really seeing a lot of pitches in three months, I felt really good,” Morse said. “I felt almost normal. I surprised myself with how I felt. I know my swing and I know what I have to do. I am trying to be easy. See the ball, hit the ball. I actually felt great.”

So is Morse hoping to get back to D.C. by the end of the week, with the Nationals hosting Atlanta on Friday?

“ASAP,” Morse said.

With four full months remaining in the regular season and the Nationals doing so well, that is exactly what the Nationals want to hear.

Just stop the rain.

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