Nationals prospect Tony Renda was placed on the 7-day disabled list April 11 with a strained quad.
Renda sustained the injury legging out an infield single in Nationals High-A affiliate Potomac’s 4-2 win over Carolina. According to Renda, the injury is not serious. He was rehabbing Monday but has not yet resumed baseball activities.
And he is already champing at the bit to get back onto the field.
“I’m the type of guy that if there’s a game playing I want to be in it,” Renda said.
Having played in 135 games for Low-A Hagerstown last season — the team played 137 total games — Renda isn’t accustomed to taking too many days off. But that’s when he’s at his best. A 5-foot-8 second baseman in the mold of Dustin Pedroia, Renda was a doubles machine in 2013, tabbing 43 two-baggers to lead the South Atlantic League.
For his efforts on and off the field, Renda was honored by the Nationals organization as the first ever recipient of the Bob Boone Award. The criteria of the award — according to a Washington Times article by Amanda Comak published Sept. 13, 2013; outstanding professionalism, leadership, loyalty, passion, selflessness, durability, determination and work ethic — reads like Renda’s resume.
“It was a very successful season,” Renda said. “To cap it all off with winning the Bob Boone Award for the organization … it’s a great feeling to get recognized for a good year. And to get that award is a really, really nice thing.”
Renda has left his mark at every stop as he’s pursued his passion as a baseball player.
His name is etched throughout the Serra High School-San Mateo record book as the Padres’ all-time leader in career hits (139), career runs (120) and career total bases (234). To put his Serra years into perspective, Barry Bonds hit for a .404 career batting average from 1980-82, ranking 11th all time. Renda ranks sixth all time having hit for a .434 career average from 2007-09.
In three years at Cal, he lead the Cinderella Golden Bears team of 2011 to the College World Series. And since being drafted in the second round by the Nationals in 2012, he has totaled 243 hits in 214 games.
The quad strain Renda suffered last Friday was a result of hustling for his third hit to cap a 3-for-4 night. It was his fourth multi-hit performance in eight games. He is currently hitting a cool .375 (12 for 32) and, despite not having any home runs, owns a healthy .438 slugging percentage.
“Every ball that I hit I try to drive and put into a gap somewhere,” Renda said. “I’m not necessarily trying to put it over the fence. I’m just trying to get that ball into the gap and run.”
That’s a day in the life for Renda. That’s why his being out of action for three straight days and counting is such a miscast.
As for the last time he went three days without playing baseball?
“There really hasn’t been,” Renda said. “It’s tough to sit and watch. But I’ve got other work to do. I need to get this quad right so I can play the rest of the year.”