Bill Ladson

Span bangs up knee making tremendous catch

Span bangs up knee making tremendous catch

WASHINGTON -- Nationals center fielder Denard Span left Tuesday's game against the Mets in the bottom of the third inning because of an injured right knee. It is not considered serious, but Span will not play Wednesday, he said.

In the top of the third inning, with two outs, Mets left fielder Matt den Dekker hit the ball to left-center field. Span made a nice tumbling catch and he landed hard on his right knee as he rolled toward the wall.

"It's a great catch. He had to go all out for it," manager Matt Williams said. "Body control at that point [was] probably not the most important thing for him -- just get the ball in his glove. He is banged up a little bit. He came down hard on [the knee], but he is fine."

Span got up quickly and slowly jogged to the dugout. After the game, Span was able to walk and put pressure on the knee, which is a good sign.

"It's all right, a little sore. I banged it pretty hard. I scraped it pretty good, too," Span said. "It's a little sore. I iced it a couple of times. I felt I got all my strength in it. So we'll see how it feels tomorrow."

In the bottom of the inning, Span was due to bat second, but he was taken out of the game and replaced by Michael Taylor, who went 1-for-3 with an RBI double in the game.

Span has been one of the best players on the Nationals this season, hitting .300 with 93 runs and a team-leading 180 hits.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the Time. He also can be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.