The Nationals will send left fielder Jayson Werth to the disabled list, reports Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post (on Twitter). Infielder/outfielder Ryan Raburn will take Werth’s place, Janes suggests, though adding him would put the Nationals over the 40-man limit.
Werth fouled a ball off his left foot during the Nationals’ loss to the Athletics on Saturday, and although he was on crutches Sunday, his injury doesn’t seem significant, tweets Janes. That’s a relief for a Washington club that’s already without its Opening Day center fielder, Adam Eaton, who’s unlikely to play again this season after he tore his left ACL at the end of April.
As Eaton was before landing on the shelf, the 34-year-old Werth has been a quality contributor for the Nationals’ elite offense this season. Playing the final season of the seven-year, $126MM contract he signed with the Nationals in December 2010, Werth has posted a .262/.367/.446 line with eight home runs in 196 plate appearances.
In Werth’s absence, the Nats have Raburn, Brian Goodwin and Adam Lind, primarily a first baseman, as candidates to play left field. Raburn, whom Washington acquired from the White Sox on May 26, has the most major league outfield experience of the three. The 36-year-old owns a respectable .253/.317/.436 line in 2,665 big league PAs and got off to a nice start this season with the White Sox’s Triple-A affiliate, hitting .277/.419/.434 in 105 trips to the plate. Raburn hasn’t been as successful at Triple-A with the Washington organization (.261/.269/.478), but he has only totaled 26 PAs since the trade.