The race to become the Nationals' fifth starter out of Spring Training took another turn Thursday as Chien-Ming Wang was forced to leave the 8-5 exhibition loss to the New York Yankees.
Wang was forced from the game with two outs in the top of the third inning due to what was officially termed as a left hamstring strain. Wang apparently sustained the injury while running to cover first base on a groundout by Russel Martin. Here's Federal Baseball's take:
... Wang fielded cleanly, but the pitcher stumbled as he made his way across the infield and rolled his ankle as he awkwardly tried to regain his balance and fell toward first, somehow touching the bag as he tumbled into foul territory. Wang was then escorted off the field, under his own power, but noticeably hobbled.
Wang allowed two hits and struck out four in his scoreless appearance. He is expected to receive further treatment, according to Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post.
First baseman Chad Tracy stood behind Wang as he fielded the ball and was the closest Nationals player to him when he fell.
“You could see his leg quivering,” Tracy said. “He didn’t want to put any weight any weight on it. You could tell he was hurting. But I don’t know what’s going with him. Hopefully, he’s alright.”
Following the game, the Nationals optioned pitcher Yunesky Maya to AAA Syracuse, while sending outfielder Eury Perez to AA Harrisburg. Jeff Fulchino and Waldis Joaquin were also reassigned to minor league camp, bringing the Nationals spring training roster down to 41 players.
The Nationals resume their spring training schedule with another game against the Yankees, this time in Tampa.
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