Michael A. Taylor will miss 'a significant amount of time'

Ben Krimmel
March 16, 2019 - 10:57 am

Washington Nationals outfielder Michael A. Taylor has a sprained left knee and left hip an MRI revealed, dealing a blow to the club.

Nationals manager Davey Martinez said Taylor could miss "a significant amount of time" after suffering the injury while making a diving catch during the Nats' spring training game Thursday.

“It stinks,” Martinez told the media Friday. “It’s a little bit more than we were hoping for… he’s a big part of our ballclub. So, I just hope that he recovers quickly and we can get him back out there as soon as possible.”

This means the Nats are down to just three healthy outfielders Adam Eaton, Juan Soto, and top prospect Victor Robles, who will likely be the starting center fielder when the club heads north to Washington to begin the season at the end of the month. 

"We still got some time, and we’ll re-evaluate here in the next week or so,” Martinez said. “Victor is going to play. But when you start a season with just four outfielders, you want a guy who can play center field. So we’re going to have to really look for that guy.”

The Nationals can also use Howie Kendrick and Matt Adams to play left field, but Kendrick is recovering from a hamstring injury and Adams can be a defensive liability and was supposed to platoon at first base to keep Ryan Zimmerman fresh. 

"We’re going to play Adams in left. (Wilmer) Difo is going to play outfield in the coming days because, you’re correct, there’s no outfield depth,” Martinez told the media Friday morning. “Adams, as you know, he can play left field, and Difo is going to play center field, left field, both in the next few days, and I think he can do it.”

Taylor, who remained in the game for another batter before exiting, was off to a fantastic spring; batting .360 over 25 at-bats for Washington.

“I think in the moment when your blood’s flowing, you don’t necessarily feel everything,” Taylor said Friday. “After I stood around for a little while, it just started to stiffen up, my knee and hip. It didn’t seem like the time to push it right there.”

Martinez said Saturday Taylor "felt a lot better" than he did Friday, but the Nationals will be without the 27-year-old to begin the season.

"But he's going to rehab," Martinez said. "And as soon as we get him back, we get him back."

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