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Espinosa misses fourth game with sore right hand

NEW YORK -- Nationals manager Davey Johnson decided not to start second baseman Danny Espinosa against the Mets even though Espinosa took batting practice without any problems on Friday afternoon.

Johnson said he would like Espinosa to have a full workout -- hitting and fielding -- before putting him back into the lineup. Espinosa has missed the last three games with a sore right hand. He most likely will play Saturday afternoon against the Mets after having the workout in front of Johnson. Espinosa hurt the hand after being hit by a pitch thrown by Braves left-hander Paul Maholm.

"[The hand] is going to be painful for a while," Espinosa said. "It's a bone bruise. It's right on the skin. There is no meat around it. ... My hand strength and my wrist feel a lot better."

Espinosa, who is known to be an iron horse since he entered the big leagues, said he was bored the last three days because he couldn't hit or take fielding practice.

"They didn't want me to do anything," Espinosa said. "I just sat in the training room from 2 p.m. to 7p.m. So I was getting bored sitting in the trainer's room."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats.
Read More: Washington Nationals, Ryan Zimmerman, Danny Espinosa