Brad Lidge was roughed up a bit in his brief rehab appearance for Class A Potomac this evening, allowing three of four Frederick batters he faced to reach safely in the bottom of the first before being pulled upon reaching his predetermined pitch count.
The veteran reliever, out since late April following surgery to repair a sports hernia, struck out the first batter he faced, then issued a walk and two singles, allowing one run to score in the process. He threw a total of 22 pitches, only 10 of them strikes.
That doesn’t sound promising. Lidge will, according to the linked article, have two or three more rehab appearances before coming back to major-league action, but he’ll probably have to pitch better than that before the Nationals activate him.
It could take up to three weeks before Lidge is cleared to throw again, and then it’s likely he’ll have to go on a rehab assignment. Thus, the Nats will have to continue to to with Henry Rodriguez as their closer, probably for another month. Rodriguez has pitched reasonably well, recording five saves, but he also leads the National League in wild pitches, with four.
Rodriguez is actually the Nats’ third choice at closer; Drew Storen, the original closer, is also on the DL, recovering from surgery to remove bone chips in his elbow.