The Washington Nationals placed Ivan Rodriguez on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to July 7 after the veteran catcher was scratched from last night’s lineup with a strained right oblique.
Rodriguez received at least five treatments of ice during the Nationals’ 10-9 loss to the Cubs and took pills given to him by the Nationals’ training staff. Rodriguez then struggled to pull on his button-up shirt.
“As a player you don’t want this kind of thing,” Rodriguez said. “At the same time it’s an injury that’s never happened before, and the good was it’s not that bad.”
With Rodriguez eligible to come off the disabled list July 22, the Nationals recalled Jesus Flores, the regular catcher in Class AAA Syracuse. Flores, 26, is hitting .234/.252/.378 and before injuries derailed his career in 2009 had developed into Washington’s everyday catcher.
Rodriguez, 39, had 25 hits in 117 at-bats this season, including seven doubles and two homers in 39 games. The almost certain Hall of Famer also has thrown out 10 of 22 runners trying to steal.
Rodirguez first felt the twinge during batting practice yesterday afternoon, and he immediately ceased activities and went back to the clubhouse. Soon after, the Nationals announced he would not be in the lineup.
“I don’t think he pulled it bad,” Manager Davey Johnson said. “I just think he pulled it and strained it. It is something you don’t mess with. It’s something where once you have a little strain in your oblique, if you continue playing, you could really make it bad.”
Johnson indicated the catching rotation probably would not change while Rodriguez is out. Wilson Ramos has been the regular catcher this season, with Rodriguez playing roughly once every three days.
Ramos is batting .400 during this home stand with three doubles, a homer and seven RBI.
Ramos is “swinging the bat well,” Johnson said. “He went through a period where he struggled a little bit, but the last three or four days he’s done a really good job. He always does a good job defensively.”