Washington Nationals News: Span’s back spasms put Espinosa in outfield

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Good morning DoD readers, and welcome to today’s District Daily! Start off your day with some great Washington Nationals articles from around the web below.

In today’s Daily, MLB.com’s Bill Ladson discusses why Denard Span left yesterday’s game against the Cubs after the seventh inning. As Ladson notes, Span suffered back spasms near the end of the game and was replaced in the lineup by Danny Espinosa, who played left field.

There was a lot of concern among Nationals fans when Espinosa entered the game and it became clear that it wasn’t a double switch—he was taking Span’s spot. Fortunately, Span, who spent the first few weeks of the season on the disabled list, didn’t leave because of a serious injury.

As Span told Ladson, his back simply locked up on him in between innings. While it’s unclear whether or not Span will play in Tuesday’s game against the Yankees, his injury isn’t too concerning for the Nationals, who have a day off today.

Also in today’s Daily, the Washington Post’s Adam Kilgore looks back on Stephen Strasburg‘s major league debut exactly five years ago today and how the once hyped-prospect is now one of the most criticized players in all of baseball.

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Be sure to check out both articles below, they’re definitely worth a read. And as always, stay tuned to DoD for all your Washington Nationals needs.

Span’s back spasms put Espinosa in outfield

(Bill Ladson, MLB.com)

WASHINGTON — Nationals center fielder Denard Span suffered back spasms during a 6-3 loss to the Cubs on Sunday afternoon and had to be taken out of the game after the seventh inning.

Danny Espinosa replaced Span in the lineup and found himself playing left field for the first time in his career, while Michael Taylor moved from left to center field.

In the seventh inning, Span popped up to Starlin Castro for the second out. After the third out was made, Span went to get his glove and tried to stand up, and his back locked up on him. Read full article here.

Five years after ‘Strasmas,’ Nationals’ star pitcher confounds

(Adam Kilgore, Washington Post)

Steve McCatty gets furious when he flips on the television and hears another disparaging rant about Stephen Strasburg. His ire rises when another reporter wants to know what is wrong with Strasburg. The Washington Nationals’ pitching coach senses himself staging a defense, the very thing he wishes to avoid.

He wants to scream Strasburg’s career numbers, black and white and unassailable. He wants to point to all the other pitchers who behave like Strasburg on the mound, only without the scrutiny. He wants to describe the behind-the-scenes habits of the pitcher teammates say is the hardest worker on the team. And then he stops himself, mad all over again, dismayed at the cycle repeating.

“Why am I defending him when I don’t feel like I should have to?” McCatty said. “He hasn’t done anything wrong.” Read full article here.

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