Eaton: Knee responding 'extremely well'

Outfielder talks rehab, Spring Training prep on MLB Network

January 9th, 2018

It has been a little more than eight months since Nationals outfielder tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. There are a little more than 11 weeks before Opening Day.

"I'm feeling pretty good, actually," Eaton said Tuesday morning on MLB Network. "I haven't had very favorable weather for a knee injury, I would say. It's been about negative-15 to negative-30 here in Michigan. It's been a tough go. But I think with this last two to three weeks, we're starting to run and starting to cut, and [I'm] doing what I need to do. The knee has actually responded extremely well.

"We've still got another three months until Opening Day. I know Spring Training is right around the corner, but once you get five-plus years, you kind of understand what it takes to get ready. That's the way we're taking it and looking at it. [I'll play] as many games as I need in Spring Training to try to get ready, but once the lights come on, there's no holding back and you've got to be ready to play."

Eaton, 29, was hitting .297 with an .854 OPS in 107 plate appearances before the injury. He is expected to open the season as the Nats' starter in left field.

"I think we're on a great schedule," Eaton said.