The Washington Post

Doug Fister feels fine after playing catch, and notes on Ryan Mattheus, Michael Gonzalez

Doug Fister. (Photo by John McDonnell/The Washington Post) Doug Fister. (Photo by John McDonnell/The Washington Post)

Doug Fister played catch Tuesday morning and, according to pitching coach Steve McCatty, felt fine. Fister’s inflamed right elbow had improved enough in recent days for him to even play catch.

Fister first felt tightness in the elbow after his first start of the spring on Feb. 2. Fister has been treated with anti-inflammatory medicine, ice and rest, and the inflammation had subsided, according to Manager Matt Williams.

The Nationals have been unconcerned about the elbow because an MRI exam from last week showed there was no structural damage to the right-hander’s throwing elbow. Fister, 30, was slated to start Friday but was skipped because of the discomfort. The Nationals had hoped that Fister would skip only that start.

More from Williams after the game on Fister.

● Ryan Mattheus threw a shortened bullpen session on Tuesday morning and, afterward, said he felt good. Mattheus threw 20 pitches, all fastballs. He said he feels that he could get batters out if he appeared in a major league spring training game now, but doesn’t believe he has built up enough stamina. He said he feels would need a handful of more bullpen sessions and facing hitter in live practice before he can pitch in games.

● Michael Gonzalez, signed last week to a minor league deal, will face hitters in a minor league game on Tuesday. He is listed on the pitching schedule to make his spring debut on Thursday against the New York Mets in Viera. But he said he could rest two days in between throwing, so he may throw Friday instead.

More Nats coverage:

Nats vs. Yankees lineup and discussion thread

Hairston and the backups recieve early playing time

No more language barrier for Lobaton

James Wagner joined the Post in August 2010 and, prior to covering the Nationals, covered high school sports across the region.



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