Not only did the Nationals lose their second straight ballgame to the Braves this afternoon, they also lost catcher Wilson Ramos for what looks like at least a couple of weeks with a pulled left hamstring.
Ramos suffered the injury when hustling down the first base line on a groundout in the bottom of the eighth inning in the Nats' 3-1 loss to Atlanta.
This comes after the Nats' 25-year-old catcher worked his way back from a devastating knee injury suffered last May, when he tore the ACL and meniscus in his right knee.
Team doctors were examining Ramos after the game and manager Davey Johnson didn't have a full report on the catcher's status when he met with reporters. He does expect, however, that Ramos will end up landing on the disabled list.
"We'll wait and see tomorrow, but that's generally a couple weeks, at least," Johnson said. "That's something you don't rush back (from)."
Johnson was asked how severe the injury looked to doctors at first glance.
"It's a pretty deep pull," he said. "We'll see how he comes out of it tomorrow, but we're probably going to have to get somebody in here."
Kurt Suzuki will take over the starting catching duties in Ramos' absence. Those two had been splitting the starts to this point.
Johnson said that catcher Jhonatan Solano would likely be called up from Triple-A Syracuse to replace Ramos on the Nats' 25-man roster. Solano has indeed been pulled from Syracuse's game against Lehigh Valley in the eighth inning and will be packing his things for D.C.
Many Nats, including Johnson, expressed sympathy for Ramos, who rehabbed so hard to get back to this point after last year's knee injury. Ramos was off to a great start offensively early in the season, batting .300 with two home runs and three RBIs in six games played.
"That's the heartbreak of the day," Johnson said. "Playing very well and hits a ball hard and tries to leg it out and pulls a hammy."
Said Ryan Zimmerman: "It's tough. Wilson has worked so hard to get back to where he's at now and is obviously a big part of this team. But having a guy like Kurt here, who is very capable of catching every day, and if that's the case, Kurt will step in and play more than he has. That's the one good thing about this team is we have so much depth and something like that which would really hurt another team, we can kind of handle. Hopefully it's not as bad as they think and he can get back soon."
Suzuki has also gotten off to a nice start offensively, hitting .231 with a homer, three RBIs and 1.060 OPS. He'll see his playing time increase significantly now, but doesn't like to see it happen this way.
"You never want to see anybody get hurt, but to see how hard he worked and how much he worked out to get him back to this point, to see a freak accident like this happen, it kind of sucks," Suzuki said. "Big blow, how good he is. It's definitely tough to swallow."