Surprising word from NatsFest yesterday that Nationals second baseman Danny Espinosa played through a torn rotator cuff in his left (non-throwing) shoulder late last season.
Espinosa is one of the more underrated Nats, given he is the only backup shortstop behind Ian Desmond, in addition to his starting duties. Espinosa's versatility is also seen at the plate as a switch hitter, where he has shown consistency over the past two seasons since becoming the everyday starter in 2011. Espinosa is averaging 19 homeruns, 61 RBI and 19 steals and 159 games played, since becoming a full time player two years ago.
Danny needs to work on making better contact, as a career .239 hitter, he has struck out a staggering 355 times, while drawing only 103 bases on balls. Espinosa hurt the shoulder on September 8th, diving for a ball against the Marlins. Originally diagnosed as a bruise, doctors determined the rotator cuff tear following the playoffs. He hit only .188 following the injury and disappeared against the Cardinals, going 1-for-15 in the NLDS.
Espinosa isn't having surgery, opting instead for rehab. He didn't start swinging a bat again until this month, but promises to be ready for Spring training next month.