The Washington Nationals haven’t hit rock bottom yet, but they are sure getting close. Entering Wednesday Washington was 42-42 and seven games back of the National League East lead. Their struggles are due in large to a large amount of injuries. On Wednesday, they may have added to that total as starting pitcher Erick Fedde exited their game against the Boston Red Sox after just one inning.
Meeting on the mound with Erick Fedde after Rafael Devers went down for a 1-2 splitter low in the zone and lined it to right… talking with #Nationals' trainer, #Nats' pitching coach Derek Lilliquist, and Davey Martinez on the way out as well…
— federalbaseball (@federalbaseball) July 4, 2018
After the consultation, Fedde walked off the mound and was replaced by reliever Mark Grace. While, the obvious indication was of an apparent injury considering Nats’ trainer Paul Lessard accompanied the group on the mound, reports suggest there was no obvious hitch in Fedde.
Didn't see anything obvious with Fedde. And given the #Nats policy of not revealing injury information in-game, it could be a while til we have any idea what's going on with him.
— Mark Zuckerman (@MarkZuckerman) July 4, 2018
Didn't see anything obvious with Fedde. The long chat was strange, too — as if he was trying to talk his way in. Just weird.
— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) July 4, 2018
There may have not been an obvious hitch, but there was evidence of something being wrong, as Fedde’s velocity dipped drastically from his first pitch to the pitch that led to a Rafael Revers’ single.
Fedde's sinker velocity dropped off significantly. Started 93-94 but was down to 90-91 by the end of the 1st inning. Dropped to 87-88 to start the 2nd and his final pitch was 80 mph.
— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) July 4, 2018
Fedde has posted an ERA of 5.79 thus far this season going 1-3 in five previous starts. He was called up on May 23. The 2014 first-round pick has had his share of struggles since joining the Nationals organization. He underwent Tommy John surgery in May of 2014 while in college at UNLV.