Last time we checked in on Nationals pitcher Hunter Strickland, he was sending himself to the injured list for two months after punching a wall. While not as self-evidently stupid, his most recent injury is just as bizarre: in the run-up to Tuesday’s game against the Pirates, Strickland got hit in the face with a flying barbell in the weight room, reportedly breaking his nose.
Per a Washington Post report, Strickland’s injury became public a few hours before first pitch, when he walked around the visiting team clubhouse looking like a weeping mummy:
Strickland was seen in the clubhouse around 4 p.m., his nose bandaged and the right side of his face noticeably red. His eyes were a bit watery as he went to meet head athletic trainer Paul Lessard. They soon went to get X-rays at a nearby doctor’s office, and not long after Strickland headed to Instagram.
He sure did head to Instagram, posting an update shortly thereafter about the barbell incident:
Strickland still suited up for the game, though he didn’t pitch: Nationals manager Dave Martinez made it clear that the freak injury had nothing to do with it, preferring the match-ups for Wander Suero and Daniel Hudson instead.
While it’s probably a good idea to not put a guy who just took a damn weight to the face into a game, Suero and Hudson combined to give up four runs in the bottom of the eighth, handing the Pirates a 4-1 win. It might behoove the Nationals to encase Strickland in bubble wrap when he’s off the mound, because they need all the help they can get to make the playoffs.