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Michael Morse Season Debut: Left Fielder Goes Hitless For Nationals

Last season, Washington Nationals left fielder Michael Morse finished with 31 home runs and 95 RBIs, while batting .303, placing him in the top-10 of the National League in each category. But Morse suffered a strained lat muscle during spring training last March, and as a result, was forced to miss the first 50 games of this season.

Batting fifth, the Florida native was back in the lineup at last on Saturday against the Atlanta Braves -- a 2-0 win for the Nats, as they improved to 30-21 on the season.

Morse, though, went just 0-for-4 in his season debut. He was eventually pulled during the top of the ninth inning with two outs remaining.

"He looked good," Washington manager Davey Johnson told reporters afterward. "I said, ‘Don't get the idea that I'm gonna be defending for you,' but it worked out just perfect. He got four at-bats, and he should be fresh for [the next game]."

For more Washington Nationals coverage and conversation, visit Federal Baseball, SB Nation's Nats blog. For the Braves perspective, check out Talking Chop. For news and updates from the Nationals series against Atlanta, stay tuned to this StoryStream from SB Nation DC.