The Washington Nationals have suffered more than their fair share of injuries this season. But how do they compare with the rest of major league baseball?
The MLB season is just over a third of the way through, and the Washington Nationals have already placed 14 players on the disabled list this year, a figure among the most in the major leagues so far in 2018.
It’s not a new feeling as last year, the Nationals surged to a 97-win season despite 22 different players spending time on the disabled list throughout the campaign. If anything, this proves that they can overcome the injuries and still be a force in the NL East.
The Nationals got off to a slow start this year in thanks to injuries to key players. But the team now seems to be rounding into form, just as some of these players are set to return.
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Here’s the complete list of Nats who have been on the DL at some point in 2018:
- SP Joe Ross (Elbow)
- 2B Daniel Murphy (Knee)
- RP Joaquin Benoit (Forearm)
- RP Koda Glover (Shoulder)
- C Jhonatan Solano (Elbow)
- OF Adam Eaton (Ankle)
- OF Brian Goodwin (Wrist)
- 3B Anthony Rendon (Toe)
- RP Matt Grace (Groin)
- RP Shawn Kelley (Ulnar Nerve)
- 1B Ryan Zimmerman (Oblique)
- C Matt Wieters (Hamstring)
- RP Ryan Madson (Pectoral Muscle)
- 2B Howie Kendrick (Achilles)
The Washington Nationals are fourth in the major leagues in total players on the DL. The New York Mets and Texas Rangers are tied for the MLB lead with 16. The St Louis Cardinals have 15 and the San Diego Padres have 14 as well. Of those teams, only the Cardinals and Nationals have winning records.
In terms of time spent on the DL, entering Thursday, the Nationals are third in MLB with 536 days. The AL West bottom feeding Rangers lead the majors with 612. The Padres, currently last in the NL West, is second with 539 days.
The Nationals have spent over $13.7 million on players who have spent time on the DL this season, which is fourth in the Majors behind the San Francisco Giants, Mets, and Los Angeles Dodgers respectively.
Despite these injuries, the Nationals are 32-22 and in the midst of a six-game winning streak. Injuries are part of the game. It’s a 162-game season and championship caliber teams must overcome adversity.
The 2017 Dodgers led the majors in both players and combined days on the DL and they were within one game of a World Series Championship. How have the Nationals overcome these injuries so far?
Well, the Nationals injury bug has managed to avoid the starting rotation, and that’s made all the difference.
The Nats starters have carried the team through the first third of the season, leading the National League with a 2.88 ERA. The rotation also leads the NL in wins, strikeouts, innings pitched, and opponent’s batting average against.
If these early season injuries have taught us anything, it’s that Nationals have the talent and depth to overcome them. If the offense struggles, the starting pitching will pick up the slack.
The Washington Nationals have been lucky so far that their starting pitching has been healthy. They say it’s better to be lucky than good and thankfully, the Nats are both.