LaTroy Hawkins lost his hold on the Rockies’ ninth-inning job last week to Adam Ottavino and now his 2015 season continues to spiral in an ugly direction.
Nick Groke of the Denver Post reports that Hawkins was officially placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday with a biceps injury. 25-year-old right-hander Scott Oberg has arrived from Triple-A Albuquerque to fill the vacant bullpen spot. The severity of Hawkins’ injury is unknown. He tossed a scoreless inning of relief Tuesday night against the Padres, but the 42-year-old right-hander owns a rough 10.50 ERA in seven total appearances this season.
Hawkins announced in December that this will be his final year in the majors. He’s making $2.25 million.
Nationals starter Max Scherzer bunted a ball into his face during batting practice on Tuesday, breaking his nose in the process. He ended up with a gnarly looking shiner around his right eye, making him appear a bit like Terminator. Scherzer still took the ball to start the second game of Wednesday night’s doubleheader against the Phillies.
Despite the injury, Scherzer was incredibly effective, limiting the Phillies to four hits and two walks across seven shutout innings, striking out 10 batters in the process. He might even have had some extra adrenaline going, as he averaged 96.2 MPH on his fastball, his highest average fastball velocity in a game since September 2012, per MLB.com’s Jamal Collier. The Nationals provided Scherzer with just one run of support, coming on a Brian Dozier solo home run off of Jake Arrieta in the second inning, but it was enough.
Wander Suero worked a scoreless top of the eighth with a pair of strikeouts. Victor Robles added a solo homer off of Pat Neshek in the bottom half. Closer Sean Doolittle took over in the ninth, working a 1-2-3 frame to give the Nats their 2-0 victory.
Over his last six starts, Scherzer now has a 0.88 ERA with a 59/8 K/BB ratio across 41 innings. He has gone six innings, struck out at least nine batters, and held the opposition to two or fewer runs in each of those six starts.