MIAMI — The Washington Nationals, already depleted in every department, were dealt another injury blow Wednesday when left-hander Enny Romero exited the 7-0 loss to the Marlins in the sixth inning with forearm tightness. After the game, Manager Dusty Baker indicated that the left-hander is likely headed to the disabled list and Sammy Solis, who was optioned Wednesday, would be recalled to replace him.
“I’m just glad we got the personnel and bodies to cover,” Baker, who referred to Romero’s ailment as a strain, said.
Romero said he initially felt the discomfort on the second pitch he threw to Giancarlo Stanton, a change-up that Stanton took for a strike. Romero, however, stayed in for the rest of the at-bat and struck out the slugger with a 98 mph fastball before motioning to the dugout. A team trainer then came out to check on him. Romero threw a pitch to test his forearm out and immediately exited.
“I was unsure, so I tried to throw a fastball to see if I still felt it again, and I did feel it again,” Romero said through an interpreter while his left arm was wrapped. “That’s why I stopped.”
The 26-year-old Romero said the only injuries he has dealt with before have been back problems, including a back spasm episode recently that he was able to get through with some rest without a stint on the disabled list. The hard-throwing Dominican was one of the Nationals’ most reliable relievers before their recent bullpen overhaul and had a 2.05 ERA over his previous 24 appearances before Wednesday. Overall, he’s posted a 3.99 ERA in 45 games. His 46th appearance might have to come after a visit to the DL.
“I’m not sure yet what’s going to happen,” Romero said. “I know I’m going to rest it tomorrow, and it depends how I feel on Friday. They might make a decision. I know they’re going to be cautious with it, but it depends how I come back on Friday and how I feel.”