JUPITER, Fla. (AP) -- Nationals first baseman Nick Johnson had a frightening flashback Wednesday night in his first game since breaking his leg 17 months ago.
In the second inning of Washington's 3-3 tie with Florida, Robert Andino lofted a high foul pop down the right-field line. Taking off in pursuit were Johnson, second baseman Felipe Lopez and right fielder Elijah Dukes, who stuck out his glove on the run to make the inning-ending grab as Johnson ducked out of the way.Afterward, Johnson laughed at the similarity the play had with the last fly ball he chased. On Sept. 23, 2006, he broke his right leg when he collided with right fielder Austin Kearns while attempting to catch a popup against the New York Mets at Shea Stadium."It was dead-on," Johnson said. "Right when he fouled it, I saw it off the bat and thought, here it goes. Maybe it had a little more air under it. I took a peek. A long peek."That wasn't the only scary moment for Johnson. In his first at-bat, he was hit in the right arm guard by a pitch from Marlins starter Scott Olsen.Johnson underwent surgery to repair his broken leg and ended the 2006 season with career highs in games (147), hits (145), doubles (46), homers (23), RBIs (77), runs (100), walks (110), slugging percentage (.520) and on-base percentage (.428).The Nationals are waiting to evaluate his performance this spring before making a decision on their first base situation, where Johnson and Dmitri Young are both seeking the starting job.Olsen has a shot to become Florida's opening-day starter.Left-hander Matt Chico started for the Nationals, allowing one hit and striking out two in two scoreless innings. Chico finished 7-9 with a 4.63 ERA last year.Mike Jacobs' two-run homer off Rob Bell in the sixth gave Florida a 3-2 lead. Washington tied it in the ninth on Pete Orr's infield single off Marcus Gwyn with the bases loaded.Center fielder Lastings Milledge, acquired from the Mets in the offseason, had two hits in his Washington debut.