Right fielder Jayson Werth made the biggest noise Sunday, crushing a pair of three-run homers in high Single-A Potomac’s 10-6 win over Lynchburg. It was the best offensive output Werth had contributed this week, having played five consecutive games with the P-Nats as he recovers from a tender hamstring.
Werth had made a rehab appearance on May 15, but his hamstring did not feel good the next day and he was shut down. This time, Werth played in five straight games, from five, seven, to nine innings, to test the hamstring at the plate and in the field. It appears to have come through fine. It is likely that Werth will be activated for Tuesday’s homestand opener against the N.Y. Mets.
Werth batted .556 (10-for-18) with one double, two homers, six RBIs and six runs scored in six games for Potomac. Werth has not played in a game with the Nationals in exactly one month, back on May 2 at Atlanta.
* Right-hander Christian Garcia again pitched one inning for Double-A Harrisburg. It just happened to be in the first inning and this time with much better results. On May 31, in his return from an arm injury, Garcia allowed two runs, one earned run and three hits in one inning. Sunday, Garcia started and wrapped a groundout and fly outs around just one single. He pitched one inning allowing no runs and no walks.
* Anthony Rendon played his second straight game at second base for Triple-A Syracuse. He had played only five games for Harrisburg at second base prior to his promotion Friday. Rendon is hitting .333 (2-for-6) with a double and two runs, two walks in his first two games at Triple-A. Rendon is batting .320 in 35 minor league games this season, and hit .240 in eight games with the Nationals as third baseman Ryan Zimmerman recovered from injury.
The Nationals had wanted to play Rendon four games each week at third base, two at second base and one at shortstop when the minor league season began. But when Zimmerman went down, Rendon was called up. Recently, Rendon missed over a week having his wisdom teeth pulled. One game after he returned as a designated hitter, the former Rice star was called up to Triple-A and placed at second base.
The Nationals will keep a keen eye on Rendon’s range at second base and see how he works there. On Sunday in a 10-3 loss, Rendon committed a fielding error in the seventh inning on a play off the bat of Pawtucket’s Brock Holt, his first error in Syracuse.
It is no secret that the Nationals are more than pleased with Rendon’s hitting. With second baseman Danny Espinosa mired in a difficult slump, just three hits in his last 10 games, the play of Rendon is now heightened just one level away from D.C.