Though he said this morning he felt “great” after departing Saturday night’s game with dehydration, center field Victor Robles was held out of the Nationals lineup for their series finale against the Braves.
“Not starting, but he’s available,” manager Davey Martinez said. “When you have a scary moment like that ... I told him be ready to come into the game. If it was a night game, it may be different. But we had a quick turnaround, so we will use him off the bench.”
Robles gave the Nationals a scare Saturday when he dropped to a knee in the top of the second inning without having seen any action in the field to that point. With several teammates rushing out to check on Robles, Martinez and director of athletic training Paul Lessard also went all the way out to center field, then eventually helped Robles walk back to the dugout.
The club later announced the 22-year-old was suffering from symptoms of dehydration.
Robles today revealed he hadn’t eaten anything Saturday until shortly before the game began.
“Right after batting practice is when I started feeling the headache and a little bit of dizziness,” he said via interpreter Octavio Martinez. “I believed it was mainly because I hadn’t eaten anything. ... Once the game got going, I got something in my stomach and I thought I was going to get better. But as the game started, I did not feel any better, so that’s when I decided to come out.”
Robles said he had never experienced those symptoms before during a ballgame. He said he received IV fluids afterward, and that helped get him back to feeling normal.
“I feel great,” he said. “And thank goodness to God for making me feel better today.”
Update: Austin Voth, today’s fill-in starter, is off to a fantastic start. He’s pounding the strike zone (36 of 50 pitches) and throwing 95-96 mph (up several notches from in the past). He made just one mistake: a slider to Josh Donaldson that wound up over the center field wall for a solo homer. That’s the only run on the board so far today through four innings, because the Nationals haven’t been able to do anything against Mike Soroka or Josh Tomlin. Yes, Soroka lasted only two innings because he was hit by a Voth pitch in the right forearm and had to depart the game. The Braves say it was out of precaution, but this obviously throws a big wrench into the rest of the affair. The Nats will get a whole lot of cracks against the Atlanta bullpen before this one is over.
Update II: Voth continues to excel, but he may be done in by two mistakes. The first one resulted in the Donaldson homer. The second one (a fastball right down the pipe to Ronald Acuña Jr.) did as well. The Nats trail 2-0 in the sixth and will need to rally against the Braves bullpen to pull this one off. So far, they’ve managed all of two singles against Soroka and Tomlin.
Update III: The Nationals finally broke through in the bottom of the seventh. Juan Soto got a first-pitch curveball from lefty Grant Dayton over the plate and he lofted it to right-center for a solo homer. Three straight singles by Matt Adams, Howie Kendrick and Gerardo Parra then tied the game, 2-2. It’s a whole new ballgame.