Washington Nationals news & notes: Davey Martinez talks Joe Ross, second TJS; Lane Thomas and Nelson Cruz heating up + more

Joe Ross – TJS No. 2:

Joe Ross and the Washington Nationals had been hoping the 29-year-old right-hander, who had Tommy John surgical procedure in 2017, then suffered a partial tear of the UCL in his proper elbow in ‘21, would have the ability to keep away from a second TJS. However after rehab, and surgical procedure to take away a bone spur, a second Tommy John surgical procedure was really useful when he was shut down with tightness in his elbow after only one begin within the minors this season.

On Friday, Ross went underneath the knife once more.

“He had it, however we’ve got not heard something but, so I’ll let you realize,” Nats’ supervisor Davey Martinez advised reporters earlier than the sequence opener with the Milwaukee Brewers in D.C.

Martinez adopted up with a short replace earlier than Saturday afternoon’s matchup in Nationals Park.

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“Joe is doing good. He survived,” the skipper stated, “… so he’s alright. He’s going to get well.

“It’s going to be a protracted course of, as everyone knows, when you will have Tommy John, however he’s doing nice. He is aware of what he’s up in opposition to, however he’s desperate to get going.”

For Ross, who opted out of 2020’s 60-game COVID marketing campaign, he has now pitched in simply 50 video games, making 31 begins within the majors over the past 4 years.

Martinez additionally supplied a pair different quick-hit harm updates in the previous couple of days.

“Mason [Thompson] is throwing reside BPs, so he’s doing effectively,” he stated on Saturday, of the right-handed reliever who went on the IL with biceps tendinitis.

“And [Hunter] Harvey (pronator pressure) is simply progressing. Taking a bit longer for him, he’s taking part in catch, he’s throwing some bullpens, however he hasn’t actually confronted any reside hitters but.”

He additionally talked about Aníbal Sánchez (cervical nerve impingement), who obtained off the airplane from West Palm Seashore to D.C. on the finish of Spring Coaching with a neck situation which has thus far saved him on the IL for the primary two+ months of the 2022 marketing campaign.

“[Aníbal] threw off the mound. So, yeah, he threw a bit bullpen. Mild bullpen,” Martinez advised reporters on Friday.

“He’s going to must proceed to throw — he’ll most likely must throw one other bullpen or two, after which we’ll have to determine what the subsequent step from that’s, whether or not we ship him to Florida the place we will get a managed setting the place he throws BP, a pair up and downs, and we management his pitch depend, after which from there, we’ll get him again on a rehab project to begin some video games.”

Cruzing Alongside:

Davey Martinez remained assured, as Nelson Cruz struggled out of the gate after signing a 1-year/$15M free agent cope with the Nationals this spring, and advised reporters he was certain the 41-year-old, 18-year veteran would flip it round on the plate, and his religion is now being rewarded.

In eight video games and 35 plate appearances in June, Cruz was 12 for 30 (.400/.486/.633) with a double, two residence runs, 5 walks, and 7 Ks heading into Saturday’s matchup in D.C., and because the Nationals highlighted of their pregame notes, going again to Might twentieth, he’s gone 28 for 67 (.418/.487/.597), taking him from .182/.268/.280 on Might 18th, to .261/.342/.387 on the 12 months earlier than the beginning of play yesterday.

He’s discovered the timing he was looking for within the first month-plus, and his supervisor stated he likes what he’s seeing from the veteran slugger on the plate, particularly his reverse discipline HR on Friday night time.

Milwaukee Brewers v Washington Nationals

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“What I learn about Nelson, when he’s going very well — that ball he hit to right-center discipline? He can try this,” Martinez stated. “He actually drives balls to heart discipline, right-center discipline. When he does that, his timing is nice. And he’s an expert hitter. In case you watch him with two strikes, he doesn’t attempt to do an excessive amount of with runners in scoring place, and numerous guys that drive in 100+ runs a 12 months, do try this. I watched Frank Thomas try this for years, simply with two strikes, man on third base, simply keep again and hit the ball the opposite approach. , for them it’s not all about hitting residence runs, it’s driving in runs. The house runs — and he says it on a regular basis — the house runs will come, and after they do come, sometimes for him they arrive in bunches, however he actually focuses on driving in runs, that’s what he likes to do is drive in runs.

“He’s only a actually good hitter. And if you speak about his timing, he wasn’t that far off, however now you possibly can see it.

“He’s on each pitch. When he’s fouling balls again, he’s simply lacking them, however he’s squaring balls up lots now, so it’s good to see.”

Cruz went 2 for 4 with a double and a house run in Saturday’s win.

Lane Practice:

Davey Martinez put Lane Thomas up high in his lineup for the third straight recreation and fifth time this season for the second of three with the Brewers in D.C. on Saturday, and he advised reporters earlier than the sport whereas he nonetheless thinks main off is just not an enormous deal, particularly, the supervisor reiterated, after the primary at-bat, he does assume Thomas has responded effectively to the change.

Thomas was 14 for 32 (.438/.471/.813) with three doubles, three residence runs, 5 RBIs, two walks, and 10 runs scored in seven video games this month heading into Saturday’s matchup.

He additionally, “hit safely in six of the seven, with all six being multi-hit efforts,” because the membership famous of their pregame notes.

“I believe for him, it was a consolation factor,” Martinez stated on Saturday afternoon, of the transfer to the highest of the order from the underside for Thomas late final month.

“He was so in-between early on within the season. I do know in Spring Coaching, he needed to work on staying on the ball, hitting the ball to proper discipline extra, you realize, and I believe he obtained caught up in attempting to do this an excessive amount of, that he was simply lacking some pitches, he was late, his timing was all tousled.”

Martinez and Nationals’ hitting coach Darnell Coles went to work with Thomas and we at the moment are seeing the outcomes.

“Speaking to D.C., I sat down with D.C., and stated, ‘Look, this man, after we first obtained him right here, all he did is need to pull, pull, pull, pull all the pieces, and we sort of obtained him extra —simply not pondering to proper discipline, however pondering extra left-center discipline, as a result of he’s obtained such a superb swing, and he doesn’t miss fastballs,’ so we talked lots to him. We in the reduction of on his work, as a result of this man will hit all day lengthy when you let him, so we needed to in the reduction of on a few of his work, and we advised him, ‘Simply be prepared for the fastball, and simply attempt to drive it to left-center discipline,’ and I believe that helped him out lots.

Milwaukee Brewers v Washington Nationals

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“Now he’s probably not attempting to hit the ball to proper discipline. He’s simply letting it occur. He sees the ball away, he simply swings at it.”

Everybody concerned put in numerous work and the 26-year-old outfielder has been on a pleasant run for a pair weeks now.

“For me, it was all simply issues that he was actually engaged on, actually eager to work on,” the supervisor stated, “and he simply misplaced deal with who he’s, and typically that occurs. He’s in a superb place proper now. Like I stated, he’s hitting balls to proper discipline and probably not attempting, he’s staying on breaking balls and driving them over there, he’s actually getting on fastballs effectively now.

“That is the man that we noticed final 12 months,” Martinez stated, referring to the run Thomas went on with common at-bats after the Nationals acquired him from St. Louis on the commerce deadline sell-off final July thirtieth.

“Hopefully we hold him that approach for a lot of, many months,” the supervisor continued, “however as you realize, this recreation at all times modifications, guys go into slumps, so if we will restrict the instances they do go in a funk, that’s what we attempt to do.”