Washington Nationals: Trea Turner Struggling After Return

mdholleran
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 20: Trea Turner #7 of the Washington Nationals fields a hit to end the first inning against the New York Mets at Citi Field on May 20, 2019 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 20: Trea Turner #7 of the Washington Nationals fields a hit to end the first inning against the New York Mets at Citi Field on May 20, 2019 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /
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Washington Nationals shortstop Trea Turner has struggled to regain his pre-injury form after coming off the IL with a broken finger.

When Washington Nationals shortstop Trea Turner went down on April 2nd with a broken finger, the Nationals immediately missed him on both sides of the field.

With Turner out, Washington struggled greatly defensively, struggles that continue today, and their offense dropped from one of the most dynamic in the league to one of the worst performing. When Turner returned ten days ago on May 17, many believed he would add the missing spark to the Nationals and be a part in turning their season around.

In his first game off of the IL Turner went 2-5 and stole a base. It looked like the speedy old Trea Turner was back, but the next nine games tell a different story.

Since his first game back Turner has gone  8 for 45 with just two runs batted in and two stolen bases. The shortstop has also struck out seven times as opposed to just two walks. He currently sports a .286 OBP, showing he just is not getting on base very much.

Turner has also struggled not just offensively but in the field. He has made three errors in his ten games back from the IL, and overall has just not looked like himself defensively. He clearly is still having trouble trying to grip the baseball, and his error in the seventh inning of Sunday’s game against the Miami Marlins cost the Nationals a lead.

Now it is not time to panic. Players typically take a while to get back into form after an injury, just look at Juan Soto. Turner also got hurt just four games into the 2019 season. He has only played 14 games this year to date, so he basically is just half a month into the year at this point.

It is likely Turner rushed back a bit early to get back onto the field to help the struggling Nats, but as the injury continues to heal he will get better and better. If Washington truly wants to make a climb back to .500 and then towards a miracle playoff push, they need Turner at his best.

When he is getting on at the top of the order, paired with how well Anthony Rendon and Juan Soto are hitting the ball, Washington has one of the best top four lineups in baseball.

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Time heals all wounds, and time will heal Trea Turner’s struggles. Once the finger is fully healed and he can be 100% comfortable on the field, there is no reason to believe he will not be the All-Star caliber shortstop we all know he is capable of being.

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