Lipscomb recalled with Gallo on IL, Corbin to start Thursday with Gore pushed back

DETROIT – Trey Lipscomb knows the deal at this point. This isn’t the first time the Nationals have called him up to replace an injured player. It’s not the second time they’ve called him up to replace an injured player.

When Nick Senzel fractured his finger on Opening Day, Lipscomb was brought up from Triple-A Rochester. When Lane Thomas sprained his knee in late April, Lipscomb was brought up. And now with Joey Gallo landing on the 10-day injured list with a left hamstring strain, Lipscomb was recalled and is back in a Nationals uniform tonight.

The versatile rookie isn’t in tonight’s lineup, but he’s prepared to play at any of a number of positions if called upon.

“Wherever you’re in the lineup, just go out and play,” he said. “That’s kind of what I’ve been doing my whole career.”

For now, it appears Lipscomb will be used everywhere in the field. He can start games at third base, giving Senzel a chance to serve as the designated hitter. He can start games at second base when Luis García Jr. needs a day off. He can start games at first base along with Joey Meneses, who suddenly finds himself back in the field regularly with Gallo injured. He can even play left field if needed, something he did once during his most recent stint in Rochester.

“He can play multiple positions, so we can use him in different scenarios,” manager Davey Martinez said. “I’m going to try to get him out there as much as I can. Knowing he can play third, short, second, first, left field, it definitely helps.”

Lipscomb actually has better offensive numbers in his 33 big league games this season (.620 OPS) than his 24 minor league games (.576 OPS). He said he was working in recent weeks on his consistency in the batting cage, hoping that will translate into better results in games. He’ll continue to get the chance to play regularly now that he’s back, with Martinez insisting the soon-to-be 24-year-old won’t be served well sitting on the bench.

The decision to place Gallo on the IL comes before the big slugger gets an MRI on his hamstring. He felt enough of a pull as he ran down the first base line in the seventh inning Tuesday night to know he needed to come out of the game and will need some time to heal.

The IL stint comes at an unfortunate time for Gallo, who after a miserable start to his season was beginning to show signs of progress. Over his last 16 games, he was batting .262 with a .333 on-base percentage and .762 OPS, his strikeout rate falling from 46 percent to 36 percent.

“I felt like I was playing pretty well and helping the team as best as I could,” said Gallo, who also leads all major league first basemen with 6 Defensive Runs Saved. “It’s a long season. There’s a lot of games. There’s going to be tough times and injuries and whatnot. We’ve just got to get through it, and hopefully I can come back and continue what I was doing.”

* Patrick Corbin will pitch in this series after all. The struggling left-hander, who initially had his turn in the rotation skipped, will start Thursday’s finale against the Tigers after MacKenzie Gore had to be scratched due to a fingernail issue.

Gore is expected to be fine to start Friday against the Marlins in D.C., so the issue isn’t believed to be serious. But after telling club officials his finger wasn’t right after his last start, they decided to give him an extra day to let it heal before re-taking the mound.

“We asked him. He said one more day will definitely help,” Martinez said.

Corbin still will be pitching on extra rest. He last started one week ago against the Mets, giving up six runs in 5 1/3 innings to fall to 1-7 with a 6.15 ERA and prompt the Nationals to use Monday’s off-day as a means for skipping over his turn in the rotation.

With Gore now pitching Friday, DJ Herz lines up to start Saturday before the rotation starts up again with Mitchell Parker on Sunday.

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