Wednesday, August 4, 2010 8:20pm
By Mark Zuckerman
PHOENIX -- Nyjer Morgan was scratched from the Washington Nationals lineup Wednesday evening due to a lingering right hip injury that required an MRI earlier in the day.
Morgan was still awaiting results of the MRI before the Nationals game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, but he was hopeful the injury was nothing serious and he could return to the lineup Thursday.
Morgan said he first noticed something in his hip two weeks ago while the Nationals were playing in Cincinnati, perhaps when he ran into the wall trying to track down Brandon Phillips triple off Stephen Strasburg.
I think thats what might have caused it, he said. But otherwise, Im clueless when it happened and how it happened.
The injury didnt prevent Morgan from doing anything on the field. In fact, he had been playing his best baseball of the season since then; over his last 12 games, hes batting .310 with a .370 on-base percentage and eight stolen bases.
Thats the most frustrating thing about it, he said.
Hes been running great. Hes been stealing bases. Hes been playing a great center field, manager Jim Riggleman said. So it hasnt shown up in his game. But its aggravating enough, and the trainer and Nyjer have talked about it enough, that were going to shut him down for a day at least.
Morgan said the pain is more noticeable when hes not doing strenuous physical activity, such as jogging or even when he wakes up in the morning. He showed no ill effects Monday night in tracking down Chris Youngs drive to the wall in left-center field.
I feel something, just like a sharp pain in my hip flexor, he said. But, I mean, Im still able to run that ball down yesterday. Its just when I wake up in the morning, its a discomforting feeling.
With Morgan scratched, Roger Bernadina moved to center field and batted leadoff Wednesday night against the Diamondbacks. Michael Morse came off the bench to start in right field and bat sixth.
Mark Zuckerman covered the Nationals for The Washington Times from 2005-09. In addition to regular work this season for CSNwashington.com, he also covers the team at www.natsinsider.com. Email Mark at firstname.lastname@example.org.