WOODBRIDGE, Va. - If you were planning on heading to Pfitzner Stadium for Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth's injury rehabilitation assignment with the Single-A Potomac Nationals tonight, you may want to readjust your Friday evening plans.
Werth has been scratched from tonight's game. In fact, he never even made it to Prince William County. Serveral minutes ago, he was spotted in the home clubhouse at Nationals Park. Based on the traffic gridlock I saw while zooming through the HOV lane on Interstate 95 (because the overhead sign said I could), there's no way he was arriving for batting practice anyway.
Werth was scheduled to play right field and hit third for the P-Nats tonight. Potomac manager Brian Rupp just excused himself from BP to rework his lineup.
It's possible the threatening weather forecast could have factored into the decision to hold Werth back from tonight's game. No sense jeopardizing his recovery from a broken left wrist sustained May 6 while sliding to make a catch on a sinking liner off the bat of Philadelphia's Placido Polanco.
Werth took batting practice at Nats Park earlier this week and immediately asked manager Davey Johnson to send him out on a rehab assignment. That was supposed to start tonight, but will apparently be delayed by at least one day.
Two other injured Nats - infielder Chad Tracy (right groin tear) and outfielder Xavier Nady (right wrist tendinitis) - are here. Tracy will play first base and hit second, and Nady is in left field batting cleanup.
Steven Souza Jr., newly recalled from Single-A Hagerstown, will replace Werth in tonight's lineup, playing right field and batting third.
For those of you planning to attend tonight's game at Potomac, it's Uncle Slam piggybank night.