Washington Nationals outfielder Michael Taylor suffered a leg injury forcing him to leave Thursday’s spring training game.
The Washington Nationals have been having an open competition for the starting centerfield job all spring.
Yesterday, that battle may have shifted. Michael Taylor, the possible frontrunner for the starting spot, was forced to leave the Nationals spring training matchup with the Minnesota Twins after hurting his leg on a diving catch in the outfield.
Taylor was able to finish the second inning after he got injured making the catch but was seen limping to the dugout at the innings end and was removed from the game directly after.
Nationals Manager Dave Martinez had this to say about Taylor’s injury. “His knee jammed right in the ground, and then his leg kind of twisted. We asked him how he felt, and he said he was getting stiff. I said: ‘Just come out then.’ It was just a weird fall.” Quote via Mark Zuckerman of the MASN Sports.
The extent of Taylor’s injury is unknown, and we likely will not know how serious it is until later this weekend, but a big question remains. If Taylor is unable to be ready for Opening Day, 21-year-old Victor Robles will be the Nationals Opening Day centerfielder.
Some believed that Taylor had the upper hand on Robles after his red-hot start to the spring, but over the past week and a half Robles has been on a tear, including his home run yesterday afternoon, and Taylor has been struggling.
This injury could either be just a minor setback that does not affect Taylor’s availability for Opening Day, or it could be the route that gives Robles the starting job in center.
Regardless of the injury and even if Taylor is deemed to be okay, the competition for the centerfield job is as hot as it ever has been. As we wait to see the news about Taylor, we really could be waiting to see who the Nationals starting centerfielder is.