Now Commenting On:

Willingham fighting viral infection

Willingham fighting viral infection

WASHINGTON -- Nationals left fielder Josh Willingham said Thursday afternoon he was unable to play this week because of a viral infection.

Willingham said he started getting sick after Sunday's game against the Phillies, but felt worse when he woke up the next morning. At first, the Nationals didn't know what kind of illness Willingham had, so he took some blood tests to determine if he had a viral or bacterial infection. The doctors concluded that he had a viral infection.

"It's running its course. I feel a little bit better. I don't know when I'm going to play. There's a lot of weakness and soreness in the muscles," he said.

The viral infection comes at a bad time for Willingham, for he has been one of the Nationals' best power hitters, slugging eight home runs in his past 24 games.

"Nobody wants to get sick, especially with something you really don't know what's going on," Willingham said. "You bang your knee or something in a ballgame as an athlete, you can take that."

In other news, third-base coach Pat Listach will not be on the coaching lines Saturday against the Mets. He will be attending his daughter's high school graduation. Hitting coach Rick Eckstein will take over the third-base coaching duties that day.

Listach will return to the Nationals on Sunday.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español