National reliever Drew Storen leaves with blister in 6-2 loss to Cardinals

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JUPITER, Florida — Washington Nationals closer Drew Storen exited early because of a blister on his right big toe Monday in a 6-2 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals.

Storen issued a two-out walk to Kolten Wong, then left the mound in the sixth inning.

"You start sweating, it gets hot, you start having friction down there and he developed a blister and then the next pitch it ripped," Washington manager Matt Williams said.

The setback is the second of the spring for the right-handed Storen, who missed time after undergoing surgery to remove part of a bone in his left hand.

"We'll re-evaluate him tomorrow and see how he is, but no need to push it at this point," Williams said.

The lack of time table for Storen's return is made more troublesome by the news that an MRI exam of reliever Casey Janssen's shoulder showed rotator cuff tendinitis. Janssen is expected to be Washington's primary setup man.

"He's a question mark for opening day," Williams said.

The injury report from Washington's position players isn't any more encouraging. Anthony Rendon was scheduled to see Dr. James Andrews for an exam on his ailing left knee.

St. Louis pitcher Michael Wacha pronounced himself ready for the season after allowing two runs, one earned, on five hits while striking out three in five innings.

Wacha, who missed much of last season with a stress fracture in his scapula, is pleased with how his arm performed this spring.

"I was real happy with the way it's been bouncing back after each start and the way it feels throughout the game as well," Wacha said.

STARTING TIME

Nationals: Washington sent minor leaguer Taylor Jordan south to face the Cardinals, keeping Max Scherzer, whose turn it would have been in the rotation, in Viera. Scherzer is expected to throw in a minor league game at the Nationals' spring training complex on Tuesday as he prepares to be Washington's opening-day starter.

Cardinals: Matheny said Carlos Martinez will get Wednesday's start when St. Louis travels to face the New York Mets. John Lackey will throw in a minor league game that day. Lance Lynn gets the start in the Cardinals' Grapefruit League finale on Thursday against the Mets.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Nationals: Outfielder Jayson Werth hit in a minor league game for the first time since undergoing offseason shoulder surgery.

MORE OUTFIELD HELP

After the game, the Nationals announced on their Twitter account that they had signed outfielder Reed Johnson to a minor league deal that included a spring training invitation. The Marlins released Johnson earlier in the day.

UP NEXT

Nationals: Gio Gonzalez starts Tuesday against the New York Mets.

Cardinals: Ace Adam Wainwright will get his final start of the spring on Tuesday when the Cardinals play fellow Roger Dean Stadium tenant Miami.

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