Nats’ Success Hinges on Murphy
The Nationals enter the final stretch in the season having scored the fourth most runs in the National League. They have done it with reigning MVP Bryce Harper playing unlike his superhuman self, something that many analysts probably didn’t predict coming into this season. Instead of Harper, it’s been second baseman Daniel Murphy powering Washington’s lineup.
Murphy, who boasts a .347/.391/.596 slash line with 25 home runs, has had a breakout season after signing a three-year deal with the Nats over the offseason. He has been a staple in the middle of the lineup for D.C., and the team simply would not be where they are right now without him.
Over the past week, however, Murphy hasn’t been able to make it into the starting lineup. An MRI revealed a mild buttocks strain Friday afternoon, sidelining him for the next few games. This is bad news for the Nats, who will already be without Stephen Strasburg in the National League Division Series. If Murphy’s injury proves to be more serious than the Nationals’ medical staff believes, Washington may have trouble making it out of the first round.
Anthony Rendon and Turner have played vital roles in the lineup over the past few weeks and Wilson Ramos has finally appeared to be back on track. While their contributions are nothing to bat an eye at, the Nats’ World Series aspirations hinge upon Murphy taking the field. He has been the most dynamic player on the team this season, and the Nats had better pray his treatments help him get back in the lineup soon.
Finally, co-editor Ricky Keeler talks about how Bryce Harper needs to get back on track: