Laynce Nix’s Achilles’ tendon this season has been a frequent source of pain and a constant source of frustration. Nix is out of the Nationals’ lineup again today in order to rest his sore heel, which stiffened last night after he entered the game as a sub in the cool Southern California air.
Manager Davey Johnson did not start Nix yesterday in the hopes of playing him today against right-handed Dodgers starter Chad Billingsley. But Nix aggravated his Achilles’ while playing the outfield, which led Johnson to give him a day off today before tomorrow’s off day.
Nix said his Achilles’ “can be a little more fragile” when he comes off the bench and it’s had a chance to tighten up during the game. On the final play of last night’s 7-6 loss, Nix chased a deep fly to the warning before making a desperate dive.
When in the lineup, Nix has been one of the Nationals’ most productive hitters. He is batting .267/.308/.483, and his .791 OPS ranks second among Nationals behind Michael Morse. The problem is getting in the lineup. He’s started only 11 games in July, primarily because of the Achilles’ issue.
“It’s pretty sore,” Nix said. “It’s really frustrating. I want to get going. I want to be out there more so I can produce more. We’re all just trying to be patient, let it get better. It’s really not improving right now.”