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Hernandez Thinks He'll Be Ready By Opening Day

Second baseman Anderson Hernandez, dealing with a left hamstring strain, said today that he believes he can recover in time for Opening Day. Hernandez injured his hamstring in an exhibition game Wednesday night while running down the first base line. Initially, he crumbled to the ground, and needed assistance leaving the field.

"But yesterday," Hernandez said, "[I was] moving a little on one leg. And today, I walk much better. So I feel good... I think I'll be ready for Opening Day. I hope so. Nothing is secure, but I think so."

If Hernandez cannot recover in time, Ronnie Belliard will assume the starting second baseman's role.

By Chico Harlan  |  March 27, 2009; 4:19 PM ET
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Hammies are pesky. I'm not holding my breath.

Posted by: JohninMpls | March 27, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Thank goodness, a DP combination of Guzman/Belliard, with our pitchers, gives me the heebie jeebies!

Posted by: soundbloke | March 27, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Last year the Dukester pulled a hamstring on OD and he was down for the count for 6 weeks. Good luck Andy!

Posted by: TippyCanoe | March 27, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to see them give SuperWillie a few games at 2d in Florida, especially with AH down.

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | March 27, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

It's kind of the photo negative of Gonzalez/Bonifacio, isn't it?


Thank goodness, a DP combination of Guzman/Belliard, with our pitchers, gives me the heebie jeebies!

Posted by: JohninMpls | March 27, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

It's kind of the photo negative of Gonzalez/Bonifacio, isn't it?


I actually dreamed that plan one would work out Mr. inMpls. Before my dreams were shattered by the sad reality of Emilios hitting.

At least those two could run. The Waddling Brothers Guzman and Belliard look like the runners up in a hot dog eating competition (leave it alone spamcastin).

Posted by: soundbloke | March 27, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse

I'd like them to start DaMeat at 2nd for the the opener; the ensuing hilarity would keep the team loose all season.

Posted by: joebleux | March 27, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

JohninMpls makes a frighteningly good point. I tore one a few years ago, going from behind the plate to the cutout in front of the plate. Actually didn't get quite that far. I didn't know how bad it was for three days when the bruise (sorry, hematoma) showed up going from my upper thigh to almost my ankle. It was three months until I gained full motion.

I was not a professional athlete, dependent on the stresses that they go through. No one really knows how severe it is, nor will they until it is "cured". Of course, healing would be sped up with the judicious injection of steroids (just a small joke). We do need a "Plan B". Belliard is the obvious choice, but that really limits us. Super Willie is logical.

BTW, going back to the box score question, I favor OPS, but it really does not matter. With the latest notice about cutting comics down to two pages and more cuts, I give up! I'm just going to move my laptop to the breakfast table and read on line.

Posted by: Catcher50 | March 27, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

A lot of hammy recovery is the program he's put on, and how compliant he is. I have more faith in the Nats' training staff this year than last. We'll see how AH's work ethic is.


Posted by: db423 | March 27, 2009 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Please keep walks, I need them with my morning coffee.

Let's play two!

Posted by: SlowPitch63 | March 27, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of health, #4 asked a question in the last post: "At what point do the Nats quit protecting their pitchers' arms?"

The answer to this is pretty simple: when they get there. If you buy into the notion that adding no more than X innings a year is the safe route, then you just keep adding X (30, in most people's thinking) until you reach a "full-season" type of level. ZNN, for instance, twirled 134 frames last year. So in 2009, he pitches about 160-165; in 2010, he goes what, 185-190? Thereafter, his "limit" is over 210 per season, which most guys don't have a hard time staying under.

There may also be an age where adding innings is no longer a concern, but I don't think I've ever heard that.

Posted by: Scooter_ | March 27, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

I don't buy the adding innings thing. That's my point. It's a modern convention that has no basis in fact.


Posted by: db423 | March 27, 2009 5:38 PM | Report abuse

It's funny with Schilling's retirement, but I wonder if he is a good case to point to about a big jump in innings leading to a lot of arm injuries. Granted, he had a 20 year career, so he'd not seem to be the case, but was quite injury prone for stretches of his career.

He went basically from a reliever his first 3 and a half years, maxing at 80 innings in a full season, to a starter at 25, jumping up to over 200 innings that year (1992). The next few years he was nothing special in terms of ERA+. Except for 1992, all of his great years were age 30 or later (1997 on), and several, (2003, 2005, and 2007) were injury limited. '03 and '05 came after brilliant years. Of course, he was terrific in 1992, 2002, and 2004, and very good in 2001 and 2006, so we'll all settle for that kind of career from Zimmermann. But, in terms of injury impacts, don't forget he was also 3 years older in 1992 than Zimmermann will be in 2009, and the innings jump effect is supposed to be worst in the early 20s.

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | March 27, 2009 5:38 PM | Report abuse

wow #4, we crossed in cyber space.

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | March 27, 2009 5:39 PM | Report abuse

They should make him wait an extra week after he thinks he's healed. We can't go down this road again.

As for Guzman, why the hating on his defense??? The Fielding Bible his RS at 12 last year, good for a 4th place tie with J.J. Hardy and ahead of Omar Vizquel, Tejeda and Orlando Cabrera. His defense was outstanding in '08. I don't know anything about Hernandez's d but you can't knock's Guzman. If you do, I'd like to hear some reasons.

Posted by: Avar | March 27, 2009 7:12 PM | Report abuse

Just looked up Belliard. He had a -1 RS in '07 and '06 when he played 2b all year so basically average. Tied with Jamey Carroll - for whom many of us pined.

He has 10 yrs in the bigs with above average range factor and inconsistent fielding percentage although admitedly below average most years. But why the angst over his D. It appears that he is basically an average 2b which makes him dramatically better than FLop, for instance. Given his solid bat for a middle infielder, I'm very content with him at 2b until Hernandez is 100%.

What am I missing here?

Posted by: Avar | March 27, 2009 7:33 PM | Report abuse

What you're missing, Avar, is that they're pudgy. So people think they can't field.

Posted by: Scooter_ | March 27, 2009 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Sigh, Jamey...

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | March 27, 2009 10:32 PM | Report abuse

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