Late in last night’s 2-1 victory over the Cincinnati Reds, Nationals’ catcher Wilson Ramos injured his right knee. In the 7th inning, a high pitch from starter Jordan Zimmerman bounced off Ramos’ glove, behind him. With a runner on first, the Nationals starting catcher, who hit a home run earlier in the game, chased down the ball, planted his right leg, and attempted to throw.
Somehow, Ramos’ cleats caught in the turf. He dropped the ball and crumpled to the ground in extreme pain.
He was scheduled to undergo an MRI after the game, with the results expected sometime in the morning. Washington manager Davey Johnson, one of the first to Ramos’ side, fears his catcher may have “torn something.” If so, one of the Nats’ top players could be lost for the season.
Ramos’ injury is the latest blow to a team already missing key players in Jayson Werth, Michael Morse, Mark DeRosa, Drew Storen, Chien-Ming Wang, and Brad Lidge. It is also a rough break for Ramos, a young man kidnapped outside his home in Venezuela and dramatically rescued during the offseason.
While Ramos is out, and while it seems severe, the extent of his injury has not yet been determined, Jesus Flores will assume the starting catcher role for Washington. Later this evening, the Nats are expected to promote a catcher from their farm system. The most likely candidate is Syracuse’s Carlos Maldonado, currently hitting .231/.286/.416 in 19 games with the Chiefs. Maldonado is a solid defensive catcher, who can hit with occassional power, but has trouble getting on base. He is nowhere near Ramos’ ability.
If Ramos is out for the season or and large part of it, expect Mike Rizzo to be on the phone trying to talk Ivan Rodriguez (aka Pudge) out of retirement.
On the inuries, Davey Johnson told Amanda Comark of the Washington Times, “We’ve got pretty good depth and a lot of talent, but I think we’ve had enough.”