The arrival of Brandon Watson, who made his major league debut Tuesday night, gives the already crowded Washington Nationals' outfield an even more cramped feel. But when Jose Guillen returns from resting his injured shoulder -- something that could happen any day -- Watson isn't likely to lose his job.
"He'll certainly play a large portion of those [remaining] games, because we didn't bring him up here to play here and there," Manager Frank Robinson said.
That means Preston Wilson, acquired in a trade with Colorado, could be benched. Entering Wednesday's game, Wilson had 29 strikeouts in 78 at-bats as a National. "We need better," Robinson said.
Meantime, Ryan Church -- who looked like a rookie of the year candidate early in the season -- has struggled off the bench, going 3 for 21 as a pinch hitter.
"It's tough," Church said. "It's an adjustment I have to make, and I haven't made it."
Church, who doesn't have an RBI in his last 30 at-bats, is bothered by a shoulder injury suffered in June. Watson, meantime, went 2 for 5 with a double and a homer Tuesday.
Guzman Out With Bad Cavity
Shortstop Cristian Guzman, who made a crucial error in Tuesday's victory, was a late scratch Wednesday because of an abscess in his lower right molar. "It's a cavity gone bad, basically," team physician Bruce Thomas said.
Guzman was replaced in the lineup by utility man Jamey Carroll, who might play more the rest of the way. Asked if one could assume that since Robinson has stuck with Guzman throughout the season -- despite his anemic .188 average -- Guzman would continue to play, Robinson said, "No, you cannot assume that."
Earlier in the season, Robinson said he stuck with Guzman in part because he didn't want to "lose" him for the rest of the season. But now, fewer than 50 games remain.
"This is the part of the season that if you did, you don't worry about it," Robinson said. "We're fighting for our lives right now."