Ramos finishing rehab, to join Nats on Thursday

Ramos finishing rehab, to join Nats on Thursday

WASHINGTON -- Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos was the designated hitter for Class A Potomac on Wednesday and is scheduled to return to the Nationals on Thursday to start his first Major League game since May 16, when he suffered a left hamstring strain against the Dodgers.

Ramos went 0-for-3 with a walk in the rehab appearance.

"He is running good, feeling good. It will be good to get him back," manager Davey Johnson said.

Besides being an excellent catcher, Ramos will provide power to Washington's lineup. He was hitting .250 with two home runs and six RBIs in 44 games before he was placed on the disabled list. Ramos is expected to split playing time with Kurt Suzuki behind the plate.

The Nationals also signed veteran Kelly Shoppach to a Minor League deal on Wednesday as an insurance policy.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.