Guillen was examined early Friday by a hand specialist, who
diagnosed swollen tendons and a damaged tendon in the left wrist.
Guillen told the team he thought he hurt the wrist during weight training.
The doctor recommended surgery to repair the damaged tendon,
which would likely keep Guillen out of the lineup until June. The Nationals said Guillen will travel to Baltimore on Saturday for a second opinion.
Asked what the Nationals would do with Guillen out, manager
Frank Robinson said, "Plans? Right now? Nothing. He's going to get
a second opinion, and we'll wait and see what happens then."
Guillen was already questionable for Opening Day because of
shoulder surgery in November, although manager Frank Robinson had
been pleased with Guillen's progress during the first week of spring training.
Guillen was hoping to return strong after fading in the second
half of last season because of his ailing shoulder, which he hurt
during a headfirst slide in June. He batted .283 with 24 home runs and 76 RBI.
Guillen's injury is the second significant blow for the
Nationals in less than two weeks of spring training. Brian Lawrence, acquired in a trade with San Diego and projected as the No. 3 starter, is out for most -- if not all -- of the season after shoulder surgery on a torn labrum and a torn rotator cuff.
Guillen's absence would leave another hole in the outfield. The
Nationals were hoping Alfonso Soriano, acquired in a trade with
Texas, would be willing to switch from second base to left field.
Now, Soriano might be an option for right field.
Soriano returns from the World Baseball Classic later this month. His position on the team remains unclear, and he told The Washington Post on Thursday upon departing for the WBC that the Nationals "have three weeks to fix it." He said he didn't know what would happen if the issue remains unresolved.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.