Martinez 'overwhelmed' by prestigious honor

Nats skipper receives Power of Baseball Award; Kieboom out, but OK

September 22nd, 2020

WASHINGTON -- Manager Dave Martinez has received awards and reached milestones over his playing and coaching career. When Washington Nationals Philanthropies named him the recipient of the Power of Baseball Award on Monday, the recognition resonated with him.

The annual award is presented to an individual, corporation, organization or local group that embodies the positive character and level of achievement exemplified throughout baseball.

“I was overwhelmed about the award yesterday,” Martinez said on Tuesday. “For me, it’s the power of positivity, and I love it. I’ve always said that if I can do something to help one person out every day, regardless if it’s here or outside of baseball, I’d feel good about myself.

“To get that award, it means a lot to me and my family. My kids texted me last night, ‘That’s pretty awesome, Dad.’ I just try to be as positive as I can every day, as you guys know, and I love people. I try to help everybody as much as I can, but I appreciate the award very much.”

The recipient of the award can select a non-profit group to receive half of the proceeds from this homestand’s 5050 Fundraiser. Martinez chose the Mid-Atlantic Burn Camp.

“They do a great job, especially with young kids that have severe burns in their body,” he said. “I thought it would be great to try to help them out. Hopefully in the future, when all this pandemic stuff is gone, we can do something more for them. I plan on doing something more for them.”

Kieboom dealing with sore left hand
Third baseman was out of the lineup in Game 1 of Tuesday's doubleheader against the Phillies, one day after he sustained a bone contusion in his left hand during Monday’s 5-1 win over Philadelphia. He was hit by a 95.2 mph sinker from Phillies starter Zack Wheeler and exited the game to undergo X-rays, which came back negative. Kieboom was slated to take swings on Tuesday.

“He’s a little sore, but he’s going to be fine,” Martinez said. “He got hit pretty hard. The good news is, it kind of hit him in the meaty part of his hand, so there was no break, nothing. ... As soon as he’s ready, he’ll be back in there.”

Utility man Josh Harrison got the start at the hot corner in Game 1.

Kendrick at injury ‘stalemate’
Infielder is itching to get back on the field after being placed on the 10-day injured list on Sept. 9 (retroactive to Sept. 6) with a left hamstring strain. Martinez spoke to the veteran after he ran on Monday, and Kendrick reiterated he would like to at least DH in one game before the end of the season.

“He’s at, basically, a stalemate right now,” Martinez said. “He gets to a certain point, and he can’t really get to that next level. I told him, ‘We’re going to just take it easy.’ He’s trying to come back, he’s trying to play. But I just don’t want him to go home [at the end of the season] with this thing getting worse. I want him to feel good about himself, so we’ll see where we’re at.”