The Washington Nationals have exploded out to a 16-8 start to the season, the best record in the national league. They were expected to be good, and, so far, they’ve been quite.
A bold move in the offseason to acquire outfielder Adam Eaton has been no small part of that start, as he’s posted a .297/.393/.462 line, with a 129 wRC+.
Unfortunately for the Nationals, that part of the good start is now over.
Per multiple reports, Eaton has a torn ACL in his left knee, and will be lost for the year. It’s a terrible blow not only to the Nationals, but to the 28-year-old who was going to be a major part of the Nationals’ season. An awkward lunge into first base while trying to beat out a grounder later, and his season is over.
Cubs fans know all too well the sting of losing a player in April to an ACL injury, though we at least got to see Kyle Schwarber return in the most dramatic fashion imaginable in the World Series. I suppose I won’t rule that out for Eaton, either, but no one is anticipating a miraculous return at this point.
Without Eaton, the Nationals will probably bring Michael Taylor back into the regular mix, and still figure to remain favorites in the NL East. But they have lost a very good player, and one whom they paid a steep price to acquire in the offseason. At least he’s under team control for several more years.