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Saturday, May 3, 2014

Nationals' Adam LaRoche dealing with sore quad

By on 5/03/2014 07:00:00 AM

First baseman Adam LaRoche, who sat out Wednesday's game with a sore quad, was replaced in the top of the 8th inning in Friday night's game against the Philadelphia Phillies by pinch runner Nate McLouth. LaRoche was hobbling on the basepaths as he singled and reached third base on an Ian Desmond double. McLouth stayed in the game at left field with Tyler Moore moving to first base as the Nationals (17-12) won the contest 5-3. Manager Matt Williams said it's an "every day" decision whether or not to play the veteran and his offense (.309/.407.485 with four home runs and 18 RBI). Adam Kilgore of The Washington Post tweeted,

Adam LaRoche, an 11-year veteran (Atlanta, Pittsburgh, Boston, Arizona, and four years with Washington), was a big part of the Nationals' 98-win 2012 season, especially in April and May when the Nats dealt with a rash of injuries just as they have in 2014. He won the Gold Glove and Silver Slugger awards that year, and garnered MVP votes. A famously streaky hitter, prone to month-long slumps even in his good years, LaRoche was never able to get going in 2013 (.237/.332/.403 with only 19 home runs). He attributed his lack of production to weight loss resulting from adjustments to his ADD medication.

Now in his age-34 season, LaRoche was selected in the 29th round of the 2000 draft by the Atlanta Braves, making his major league debut on April 7, 2004. In January 2007, Atlanta traded him with Jamie Romak (minors) to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Mike Gonzalez and Brent Lillibridge. He gave the Pirates two solid years, but a mediocre 2009 led them to trade him to the Boston Red Sox for Hunter Strickland (minors) and Argenis Diaz in July. The Red Sox then flipped him to the Atlanta Braves for Casey Kotchman.

As a free agent, LaRoche signed for one year with the Arizona Diamondbacks (2010), and then for two years (2011-12) with the Washington Nationals. He lost 2011 to a torn labrum and rotator cuff in his left shoulder. The Nationals made him a Qualifying Offer at the end of 2012, and then re-signed him for 2013-14 (2015 mutual option) at $24 million.

  (Rose Ingberman) and read her blog Lady and the Nats

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