While right fielder Jayson Werth is out of tonight’s Nationals lineup with a mild groin strain, Manager Davey Johnson said Werth will be available as a pinch-hitter if needed. The injury will likely cause Johnson to use a pinch-runner for Werth should he reach base, though.

Given Werth’s expectations Tuesday night, Werth will likely return to the lineup Thursday night. Johnson, though, did not commit either way, saying Nationals trainers would check on Werth tomorrow afternoon and then make a determination.

Meanwhile, Ivan Rodriguez will take live batting on the field for the first time since July 7, the day he strained his right oblique and stormed angrily out of the batting cage. Rodriguez will not rejoin the Nationals until after rosters expand at the earliest, but he could begin taking at-bats as a designated hitter on a minor league rehab assignment as early as this weekend.