Davey Martinez underwent a planned, minor foot procedure earlier this morning, and though he’s expected to be at Nationals Park in time for today’s series finale against the Phillies, bench coach Tim Bogar may take over his duties for the game.
Martinez had previously scheduled the procedure, expecting today to be an off-day for the Nationals as originally planned. Wednesday’s rainout, though, pushed the game to this afternoon at 1:05 p.m.
Martinez went ahead and had the procedure this morning, with Bogar handling the manager’s pregame Zoom session with reporters.
“I think we plan for it every day,” Bogar said of the possibility of stepping in temporarily as manager. “Every day that we prepare for a game, I’m ready to help Davey any way I can. Then if something happens during the game and he gets thrown out, I have to manage anyway. This is an easy transition for us, and hopefully it’s just one day and Davey’s back.”
Bogar has gone through his own medical issue recently. He had back surgery in mid-August and only returned to the dugout for the first time Monday. Bullpen coach Henry Blanco had filled in as bench coach in Bogar’s absence.
Bogar, originally Martinez’s first base coach in 2018-19, has managerial experience in his career. As Rangers bench coach in 2014, he took over the season’s final 22 games after Ron Washington stepped down and went 14-8.
* The Ryan Zimmerman bobblehead giveaway planned for Friday’s game against the Mets won’t be available yet, due to what the Nationals said was “a transportation challenge that was beyond our control.”
Fans who attend Friday’s game will now receive a voucher that can be redeemed for the bobblehead on a future date. Those who attend the Oct. 1-3 season-ending series against the Red Sox can pick their bobbleheads up at the bottom of the Budweister escalators from first pitch through the end of the fourth inning. Those who don’t attend that series may redeem their vouchers at the team store from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday starting Oct. 4.
* The Nationals will need a fill-in starter for the nightcap of Saturday’s day-night doubleheader against the Mets.
The club announced rotation plans for the weekend series, which includes five games in four days. Sean Nolin starts Friday night, with Erick Fedde on the mound for Saturday’s seven-inning opener. Josiah Gray is scheduled for Sunday’s game, with Patrick Corbin pitching the Labor Day matinee finale.
That means someone else has to pitch Saturday night’s seven-inning game. It’s possible the Nats could go with nothing but relievers, depending on how the first two games of the series go. If they choose to promote someone from within their system, top prospect Cade Cavalli would be on schedule, though club officials have wanted him to pitch more at Triple-A Rochester before making his major league debut.