A few updates as we get started with Sunday’s Nats-Marlins game:
—Roger Bernadina had successful surgery to insert two screws in his right ankle last night. He was in the clubhouse this morning watching TV, and a procession of Nationals players came over to shake his hand and wish him luck. He said he’ll be out at least two months.
—Justin Maxwell was called up to take Bernadina’s place. The news came last night, which sent Maxwell and his wife on a late-night drive from Syracuse to Olney, Md., where he grew up. Then he headed for the ballpark this morning, eager to be the first one in the clubhouse so he could get his locker set up without disturbing veterans. Maxwell got a brief call-up at the end of 2007, but was waylaid by injuries most of last year. Still, he can run like a gazelle and has the potential to hit for power, so he’ll see some time here and there. Manny Acta said Maxwell will be in the same role Bernadina was—a fifth outfielder and defensive replacement at any of the three spots.
—Acta said if the Nationals need a closer today, it will be by committee, since Joel Hanrahan has pitched three days in a row. Don’t read any more into it than that.
—The Nationals will likely make a roster move later today to make room for Jordan Zimmermann, who is scheduled to make his major-league debut tomorrow. Expect it to be whichever catcher (Wil Nieves or Josh Bard) the Nationals feel they can get through waivers and send to Class AAA Syracuse.
—Finally, Mike Rizzo on Manny Acta’s performance: “I support Manny Acta, and so does the organization as manager. He’s a good young manager, and I think he’s handled this ballclub great.