“He wasn’t feeling good, so just for precautionary reasons they took him to the hospital just to see what’s going on,” said bench coach Chip Hale, who managed the rest of Sunday’s 7-0 victory in Martinez’s place. “But we’re expecting everything will be good.”
The Nationals declined to provide further specifics on Martinez’s illness. It was not particularly hot Sunday — 88 degrees at first pitch — and Martinez conducted a pregame news conference at 11:30 a.m., about two hours before the game. This has been a trying weekend for him in some ways, after his approach to a scary situation was heavily questioned when Braves outfielder Charlie Culberson was hit in the face by a pitch Saturday night. Martinez was visibly emotional while addressing reporters Saturday, and he reaffirmed his stance on the matter before the Nationals took the series finale.
Then Martinez was absent from the dugout for the final innings Sunday. The top step of the dugout, where he typically stands, was empty aside from his coaches cycling through the spot. Hale handled the manager’s postgame interview for the second consecutive Sunday — the first time was after Martinez was ejected in Atlanta — and now the team hopes Martinez is back as soon as possible.
“All you can worry about is hopefully he’s doing great,” veteran infielder Howie Kendrick said. “I wish him the best. I love Davey. We talk pretty much every day. He’s got a lot of insight, and I’ve known him for years, playing against him in the American League, too. He’s done a great job this year.
“I wish him the best right now, and like I said, I don’t know what’s really going on, but hopefully it’s nothing major.”