Saturday, September 23, 2006

Get Well Soon, Nick

I was just thinking to myself this morning: "'s almost the end of the year and Nick Johnson hasn't been hurt once." The main rap on Johnson has always been that he is "injury prone," but this year he seemed to be dodging the injury bug better than anyone.

Until this afternoon. Johnson collided with Austin Kearns trying to field a fly ball in shallow right and has fractured the femur in his right leg. This is nothing short of a soul-crushing event for Johnson, the Nationals and their fans. Nick Johnson was having an amazing season this year, with career highs in games, hits, doubles, homers, RBIs, walks, slugging percentage and on-base percentage. This great season was often overshadowed by the stellar performance of Alfonso Soriano, but Nick Johnson deserves a round of applause from all of us. I had hoped to participate in that applause on October 1, but sadly that won't be possible now.

Johnson faces a long road back to recovery. He's having surgery in New York tonight to repair the broken bone, and is looking at a 3-6 month recuperation time. Obviously, the latter end of that window runs into Spring Training, so it remains unclear at this time whether Nick will be able to join the team in Viera right away. Thurdl at the Nationals Institutes of Health will keep us informed of all the latest on Johnson's recovery.

Get well soon, Nick! Nats baseball wouldn't be the same without you.