First baseman Ryan Zimmerman has played through plantar fasciitis in his foot all season, but with his performance being terrible and the injury not getting any better the Nationals have decided to place him on the disabled list.
Zimmerman, who missed two-thirds of last season with injuries, hit just .209 with five homers and a .611 OPS in 56 games this year while transitioning from third base to first base due to shoulder problems.
Washington is also without left fielder Jayson Werth and Clint Robinson has been seeing regular playing time as one of his replacements, but manager Matt Williams could use Robinson at first base if he’s willing to turn left field over to rookie Michael Taylor and/or career-long infielder Danny Espinosa.
Robinson is a 30-year-old who hasn’t hit much in limited action yet, but he spent eight seasons in the minors hitting .302 with an .891 OPS.
Robert Murray and MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported earlier, respectively, that the Phillies signed pitcher Francisco Liriano and infielder Neil Walker to minor league contracts. If he makes the major league roster, Liriano will earn a salary of $1.5 million with an additional $1.25 million available through performance incentives. Walker’s contract information is not yet known.
Liriano, 36, struggled from 2016-18 but enjoyed a productive year out of the bullpen for the Pirates this past season. He posted a 3.47 ERA with 63 strikeouts and 35 walks over 70 innings. The lefty was quite effective against same-handed batters, limiting fellow lefties to a .659 OPS. That would figure to be a key component if Liriano makes the Phillies’ Opening Day roster.
Walker, 34, hit .261/.344/.395 with eight home runs and 38 RBI over 381 plate appearances with the Marlins last year. The veteran is versastile, having played first, second, and third base along with both corner outfield spots in recent seasons. Despite Walker’s versatility, it is tough to see room on the Phillies’ roster for him, barring injuries to other players. It never hurts to have depth.