Christian Garcia suffers another setback (plus Jordan notes)

PHILADELPHIA - Christian Garcia’s rough 2013 continues.

The right-hander, who made his major league debut with the Nationals last season and played a big factor in the Nats’ bullpen down the stretch, has suffered a hamstring injury and will miss his next scheduled appearance for Triple-A Syracuse, manager Davey Johnson said today.

Garcia will get an MRI on the hamstring to determine the severity of the injury.

This is the third separate injury issue that Garcia has had to deal with this season. He partially tore a tendon in his right forearm back in spring training, derailing the Nats’ plans to turn him into a starter and sidelining him for multiple months.

After starting a rehab assignment and working his way up to Syracuse, Garcia felt some shoulder stiffness in mid-June that sidelined him for two weeks. He returned and pitched in five more games for the Chiefs before suffering this hamstring injury.

Garcia posted a 2.13 ERA with 15 strikeouts and two walks in 12 2/3 innings with the Nats last season and made the team’s postseason roster for the National League Division Series, but the injury bug has bit him hard this season, and the likeable right-hander’s 2013 season has been significantly thrown off because of it.

Meanwhile, Nats right-hander Taylor Jordan mentioned after last night’s start that he thought he was tipping his pitches. He felt the Phillies were able to pick up on how he was gripping the ball behind his back, telling them what pitch was coming.

Davey Johnson didn’t happen to see that himself, but he’s not surprised that such a problem would negatively impact Jordan.

“If you get it behind your back and you twirl it around and get your grip to your slider or your changeup, yeah, that would be an issue,” Johnson said. “Because believe me, they study it. It doesn’t take them long. There’s some guys, their first base coach, if he was doing it, I guarantee the hitters knew what was coming. They’re good at that. But I haven’t noticed it and nobody has mentioned that to me about it.”

How does Jordan go about putting an end to that problem?

“That’s real easy,” Johnson said. “All you do is grip your curveball (behind your back) and let them tell their hitter curveball’s coming and then change it your fastball and throw it up and in. It’s all over. But there was a lot of comments on a couple guys fanning their glove out on their breaking ball, (Stephen Strasburg) turning his glove on his breaking ball more than on his fastball.

“We watch it, too. We study our own pitchers.”

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