If you felt deflated when you heard Washington Nationals outfielder Juan Soto was being placed on the 10-day Injured List, you weren’t alone. If it felt like you were being sucker punched yet again, after taking blows when the season started without a handful of regulars and then Stephen Strasburg going on the IL, you were.
If for one day you felt a bit of a reprieve when a four-pitch walk to Yan Gomes forced in the game winning run, you deserved it. While the Nationals will be without their super star slugger in Soto for the next week, expect Trea Turner to shoulder the load in his absense.
Washington Nationals shortstop Trea Turner will be up to the challenge when asked to provide extra offense in Juan Soto’s absence.
Prior to word breaking the Nationals would be without Soto, Turner led the team in hits, home runs, extra base hits, OPS (sorry Josh Harrison, not enough at-bats to qualify), and stolen bases. In the one game after word broke the Nationals would be without Soto, Turner had two hits, a stolen base, and drove in the game-tying run in the 8th inning. We’ve gotten used to this type of production from Turner, and we’ll be getting some more with Soto out of the lineup the next ten days.
With Turner moved down to the three-spot in the lineup, twice he came to the plate with runners on first and second and nobody out. The hot hitting Josh Harrison has been getting on base regularly and now will be setting the table for Turner, from the two-hole. Andrew Stevenson drew leadoff duty and reached base twice. If the two can give Trea the opportunity to produce, he will.
All is not lost with the Nationals being without the services of Juan Soto the next couple of series’. Patrick Corbin gave the team six solid innings and Max Scherzer is on the hill next. String together a few wins, get a couple days off to rest, get the team healthy, and go 1-0 each day. The season is a marathon, not a sprint, and no-one is going to runaway and hide in this division.
Tough break for the Nats and Soto. Leave the “woe is me” attitude at home, and put your stock in the best shortstop in the National League. He’s on the rise.