Nationals put Juan Soto on IL with strained left shoulder

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Washington Nationals' Juan Soto (22) is safe a second base with double ahead of the tag by St Louis Cardinals shortstop Paul DeJong (11) during the seventh inning of a baseball game at Nationals Park, Monday, April 19, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

WASHINGTON – Washington Nationals right fielder Juan Soto went on the 10-day injured list with a strained left shoulder on Tuesday, the latest setback for the 2019 World Series champions.

“We thought, ‘Hey, we’re not going to take any chances with him,” Nationals manager Dave Martinez said. “We’ll try to get him right as quick as possible.”

Martinez said Soto had been dealing with an issue in recent days, complaining about a tight triceps and soreness.

The team decided to have the 2020 NL batting champion get an MRI exam Tuesday morning. The decision to sideline Soto came less than an hour before Washington's 3-2 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday night began.

“For me and (general manager Mike Rizzo), it was a no-brainer to put him on the IL and get him right,” Martinez said.

He said he was not sure how Soto injured himself.

Also unknown at this point: Exactly how long Soto will be out.

“Honestly,” Martinez said, “I couldn't tell you.”