FLUSHING, N.Y. - The Nationals just can’t catch a break on the injury front.
As reported by my colleague Byron Kerr, Hagerstown Suns outfielder Brian Goodwin, the 34th overall pick in last year’s draft, had to leave yesterday’s game with an apparent upper right leg injury after pulling up lame while running out an infield single.
Goodwin is expected to be re-evaluated today.
The 21-year-old Goodwin had gotten off to a ridiculous start, going 6-for-16 with two home runs, a double, five walks and two steals in his first five professional games. He joins fellow 2011 pick Anthony Rendon as top Nats prospects to suffer injuries during the first full week of the season.
How did Edwin Jackson feel about his Nats debut last night?
“It wasn’t bad,” Jackson said.
Sounds like the appropriate reaction for a five-inning, three-run performance. Not bad, not great.
The main blow allowed by Jackson was a two-run homer to Mets center fielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis, which came after a two-out walk in the fourth inning. Jackson walked catcher Josh Thole on four pitches, allowing the inning to continue, and then with two strikes, the Nats starter elevated a slider to Nieuwenhuis, who crushed it out to right.
“It’s a matter of a pitch or two, get a situation, man on first, two outs and a 2-2 count,” Jackson said. “Slider’s supposed to be buried, it just stayed up and he did what he was supposed to do with it, he hit it for a home run. Other than that I felt good. I felt like it was a pretty good game, kept the team in the game.”
Jackson sure wasn’t helped by a tight strike zone, which hurt him during the Nieuwenhuis at-bat.
“I felt like it was a couple close pitches in that AB. Probably could have went either way,” Jackson said. “They were called balls. It’s just something you have to deal with, but I mean, after the walk I still felt good. I mean, I got ahead in the count, you get the count to 1-2 and you get it to 2-2 and it’s just a matter of making a pitch or not.”
Meanwhile, while we’ve already seen reliever Henry Rodriguez at his best this season, yesterday we got a taste of the bad side of Rodriguez which popped up in past years. Rodriguez allowed a leadoff walk in the ninth, rushed a throw to first which went down as an error and then surrendered the game-winning hit, all in the span of three hitters
But given how filthy Rodriguez has been in most of his chances this spring - and even just an inning earlier - the Nats have faith in him.
“I’m sure Henry is the maddest person in here,” Ryan Zimmerman said. “He’s going to be a person that helps this team out a lot and wins a lot of games for us. It happens. Things like that happen. Henry is going to win us a lot more games with his stuff and his pitching than he is going to lose us games like that. We’re learn from it and shake it off and try to win.”