Infielder Danny Espinosa was away from the team on Wednesday to be with his family after the death of his grandmother. Steve Lombardozzi filled in at second base, in just the second game that Espinosa has missed all season. Espinosa tweeted Wednesday afternoon from his Twitter handle @DannyEspinosa18, "Thank you everyone for the prayers and thoughts :) I will be back in ATL on Thursday ready to play Friday."
Johnson said reliever Sean Burnett, who has not pitched since Sept. 2 due to nerve irritation in his left elbow, was available out of the bullpen on Wednesday night.
Though the Nationals have shut down ace Stephen Strasburg -- Wednesday was scheduled to be his final start of the season, but the Nationals cut him off after his last home outing on Friday -- Johnson joked that they still may have a role for him.
"I check on him," Johnson said. "I told him yesterday, gave him something to think about and said, 'Keep taking batting practice. I might need your bat. We can't use your arm. We'll use your bat."
Johnson was half-serious, but Strasburg is known for his prowess at the plate. He is a .277 hitter this year, with four doubles, one home run and seven RBIs in 47 official at-bats.