SAN FRANCISCO -- After missing the first half of the season following surgery to remove bone chips in his right elbow in April, Drew Storen knew there would be some inconsistency when he came back.
From that perspective, Tuesday night's rough outing was just another part of the process. Storen gave up four runs on three hits, a walk and a wild pitch while recording only one out on 23 pitches.
"It's all part of it. It's just getting back in a groove," Storen said. "It's part of the healing process and part of getting polished.
"I've just got to make the adjustments, I guess. Missing down in the zone is not really normal for me. I've got to adjust and go from there."
That was what manager Davey Johnson saw as well: Storen was simply missing his spots, particularly with his breaking ball. Johnson didn't want to use reliever Sean Burnett to finish out the inning, but he also didn't want to see Storen take too much damage.
"It was more that he had trouble locating everything, really. I don't know if he was trying to throw too hard," Johnson said. "Hopefully I didn't let him throw too many pitches."
Storen, for his part, took the outing in stride. Although he issued a four-pitch walk to Buster Posey and let Posey take third on a wild pitch, all the hits he gave up were on ground balls.
"You're going to have that. You've got to make adjustments," Storen said. "I just wasn't really able to do it, and when I did, like I said, grounders found holes. It's going to happen."
Johnson using coming off-day to reset Nats' rotation
SAN FRANCISCO -- The Nationals are going to use Thursday's off-day to reset their rotation a bit.
Manager Davey Johnson tentatively set a plan in place Tuesday, and he hadn't come up with any changes to it as of Wednesday. In Johnson's new alignment, Ross Detwiler will open this weekend's series against the Mets on Friday, swapping places with Edwin Jackson, who will pitch Saturday.
Gio Gonzalez will take the mound Sunday against the Mets, then Jordan Zimmermann and Stephen Strasburg will open the Nats' series against the Braves, with Detwiler pitching the third game.
The only thing that could change is Zimmermann's spot. Johnson has been attempting to rest Zimmermann due to his nagging case of right shoulder inflammation. Washington doesn't have to officially announce its rotation yet, and Johnson wanted to wait until Zimmermann's between-starts throwing day to decide for sure.
"We'll see how he gets through that," Johnson said.
Michael Morse was back in the lineup Wednesday after sitting out Tuesday's game with a jammed right thumb. Morse said he was fine even after leaving Monday night's game with the injury.
"He, miraculously, is a lot better," Johnson said.
Entering Wednesday, infielder Danny Espinosa had hit .370 with a double, three homers and nine RBIs over his last 11 games, and posted a .307/.358/.496 batting line in 31 games since July 16, raising his average from .237 to .252 and his OPS from .694 to .726.
"He just made a lot of great adjustments," Johnson said. "His approach is better. His stroke is better. Of course, the results are a lot better, too. He's having fun."