What should have been the proudest day of Sandy Leon's baseball career instead turned into a nightmare.
Leon, the 23-year-old catcher making his big-league debut for the Nationals, suffered what appeared to be a serious right leg injury after getting barreled over at the plate by the Padres' Chase Headley in the top of the fourth inning of tonight's game at Nationals Park.
Summoned straight from Class AA Harrisburg after starting catcher Wilson Ramos tore the ACL in his right leg Saturday night, Leon got his right leg caught underneath him as Headley crashed into him on a play at the plate. He remained on the ground for a minute before being helped off the field by assistant trainer Mike McGowan, unable to put any weight on the leg.
The Nationals initially announced the injury as a sprained left ankle, then later amended it to say the sprain was to his right ankle.
Jesus Flores, forced into the everyday catching job now with Ramos out for perhaps the rest of the season, had to take over for Leon on what was supposed to be his night off. The Nationals also will need to add another catcher in time for Tuesday's 1:05 p.m. series finale, with Class AAA Syracuse's Carlos Maldonado or Jhonatan Solano the likely candidates for a promotion.