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Harper appears to dodge serious injury

May 2, 2013, 2:35 AM EST

Updated at 10:35 p.m.

ATLANTA — Already beset with injuries to other key members of their lineup, the Nationals got a scare tonight when their most important player had to depart with what initially looked like a serious injury.

Bryce Harper, though, is fairly confident he didn't strain any muscles on an awkward, sixth-inning swing, and is dealing only with a bruise to his left side suffered Tuesday night when he crashed into the outfield fence.

"If I can play tomorrow, I'm gonna play," Harper said. "If they put me in the lineup, I'm gonna play. I can play with pain and I can tolerate pain, so hopefully there's nothing that can keep me out of that lineup tomorrow."

Davey Johnson also downplayed the significance of the injury, though the veteran manager didn't sound inclined to take a chance and let his 20-year-old slugger play in Thursday's series finale atRead more »

  1. Steady Eddie - May 2, 2013 at 1:29 AM

    Hold breath, everyone.

  2. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 2, 2013 at 1:42 AM

    hope it is from hitting wall not torque from holding up a swing.

  3. Less Platu - May 2, 2013 at 2:24 AM

    Good Game, Nats!

  4. Less Platu - May 2, 2013 at 2:25 AM

    Good Game, Nats!

  5. Ivan Tuski - May 2, 2013 at 2:34 AM


  6. sjm308 - May 2, 2013 at 2:49 AM

    Will re-post here since this is a newer article. Just got back from reading ESPN's baseball page. There was an interesting article on teams who were in first place as of May 1st. Last year only one team that was in first on 5/1 went on to win its division. Yes, it was our Washington Nationals but the point is, it really is a long season. Just ask the Cleveland Indians. Since 2009 only 8 teams out of 24 in first on 5/1 held on to win their division so lots can happen. I think Ghost and Natsjack have said this often.

  7. A DC Wonk - May 2, 2013 at 2:53 AM

    Steady Eddie said… Hold breath, everyone.I think you mean — we can exhale, now!

  8. Steady Eddie - May 2, 2013 at 3:01 AM

    Wonk — yeah, now — hopefully fortunately — but not when I wrote that…

  9. SonnyG10 - May 2, 2013 at 3:20 AM

    Can't afford to lose Harper. I sure hope he's ok. As hard as Bryce plays, I guess its bound to happen sooner or later, but please not anytime soon.

  10. Section 222 - May 2, 2013 at 3:26 AM

    More historical perspective from DC Baseball History, including game information for all the games the Nats have played on May 1. Here are the Nats' W-L records after play on May 1 since they came to DC in 2005:2005: 13-122006: 8-182007: 9-182008: 12-172009: 5-172010: 13-112011: 13-142012: 14-9This year, we're 14-14. Who would have thought at the beginning of the season that when the Nats headed to Pittsburgh for the series starting May 3 the Pirates would have a better record? Don't look now, but the Bucs are 16-12.

  11. peric - May 2, 2013 at 3:37 AM

    Either way 40 games will be plenty enough to use as a gauge to determine what kind of team the Nats are this year. It seems fairly clear it won't be good offensively. Pitching and defense at times look iffy but it sure looks as if they will come around to be some of the best league wide. But there doesn't seem to be much hope of the offense coming around with this starting lineup. It is what it is. If Harper rests tomorrow it may well be pathetic.

  12. Eric - May 2, 2013 at 3:54 AM

    What was different about our offense at this point last season? Had they already woken up from the slow start?

  13. Section 222 - May 2, 2013 at 4:31 AM

    Eric, just going from memory, I'd say that the offense was better last year, but it wasn't like everything was clicking on all cylinders. ALR was hot (people often said he carried us for the first month). Desi was also hitting well. But Zim was ice cold, Morse was injured, Werth was only so-so, and then he got injured in early May. Danny was Danny, but maybe not as bad as he's been this year. Harper didn't arrive until the end of the month. JZnn is showing the way.The real difference as JD has noted was pitching. Our starters were all JZnn like, particuarly Stras and Gio. That's the reason that I think that improved starting pitching is the key to catching the Braves, not waking up the bats.

  14. Gonat - May 2, 2013 at 11:04 AM

    MLB Network has videotape of Bryce's BP session pre-game and he was stiff and visibly upset with his swings in the cage. He wasn't 100% going into the game. You'd never know it.

  15. CzarKing - May 2, 2013 at 2:40 PM

    Section 222, pitching AND defense were better last May. I think our pitching is still actually very good as a unit, just some unlucky fielding behind them.

  16. Daylos - May 2, 2013 at 2:57 PM

    Strasburg, Gonzalez, Haren, Clippard, and Storen are scuffling/struggling. That doesn't look like a very good unit to me considering that's 60% of the starters and 50% of the bullpen they are counting on to close out games.





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