Hamstring and abdominal injuries limited Stephen Drew to just 46 appearances last season, his lowest total since breaking into the majors back in 2006. His strikeout (19.8 percent) and walk (7.5 percent) rates were pretty much in line with his career marks, but Drew hit for less power than even before (.105 ISO), which is especially troubling when you consider that 2017 was an all-time year for power production in Major League Baseball. Drew's hard-hit rate fell by a whopping 10 percentage points to 31.2 percent, and his O-Contact rate declined dramatically as well -- when Drew swung at pitches outside of the zone, he was far more likely to come up empty. Drew has graded out as a net negative in the field in three of the last four years, so his appeal as a big-league bench piece is limited. He may have to settle for a minor-league deal in free agency.
Drew (abdomen) was activated from the disabled list Saturday, Adam McCalvy of MLB.com reports. The Nationals have already ruled Drew out for the NLDS, but with this move, they keep open the possibility of getting Drew back later in the postseason, should they advance. Drew has missed nearly the entire second half with an abdominal strain.
Drew (abdomen) will not be ready for the NLDS but could be available later in the playoffs if the Nationals advance, Jorge Castillo of the Washington Post reports. He likely wouldn't make the roster even if he were ready, but if any of the Nationals' primary middle infielders were to suffer an injury, Drew could be useful in the NLCS or World Series, provided the Nationals get that far. The 34-year-old is hitting .253/.302/.358 with one home run in 106 plate appearances this season.
Drew (abdomen) was able to play catch Sunday, William Ladson of MLB.com reports. An exact return date still has not been established for Drew, but it appears that he could make his way back to the field in the coming days. The 34-year-old hasn't played since July 25 but has been able to take at-bats and play catch in recent days.
Drew (abdomen) said he hopes to play in some games next week, Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post reports. Drew, who suffered a torn abdominal muscle at the end of July, remains set on returning before the end of the season. It was originally thought that he wouldn't be able to return this season, but the 34-year-old has been steadily ramping up his baseball activity in recent days and it now looks like a possibility. If he continues to trend in the right direction, Drew could potentially return to game action sometime next week, though it's unlikely that he'll be included on the Nationals' postseason roster even if he does return.
Drew (abdomen) took some at-bats during a simulated game and jogged in the outfield Tuesday, Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post reports. Bryce Harper's simultaneous participation in the simulated game was presumably of greater interest to the Nationals, but like the outfielder, Drew also isn't closing the door on returning to the big club before the end of the regular season. In Drew's case, a return seems less likely, given that he's yet to receive clearance to resume sprinting since tearing the abdominal muscle from the bone in July. Even if Drew is able to get in a game or two in September, it's unlikely that he'll be included on the Nationals' postseason roster.