Ludwick misses finale with knee swelling

Ludwick misses finale with knee swelling

WASHINGTON -- The shorthanded Reds were without yet another bat in Wednesday's series finale with the Nationals, as Ryan Ludwick was out of the lineup.

The left fielder had "a little bit of swelling and inflammation just above his left kneecap," manager Bryan Price said. "With a day off tomorrow, it just seemed to make sense to give him today [off] and then he'll get [Thursday] off and then hopefully we'll have him at 100 percent for the St. Louis series."

Cincinnati hosts the Cardinals for a three-game set starting on Friday.

The 35-year-old Ludwick is batting .246 with two homers and 16 RBIs in 36 games this season, numbers that mirror his entire production during an injury-ravaged 2013 campaign. He batted .240 with two home runs and 12 RBI in 38 games last season.

"It hasn't been a great start," Price said. "But it hasn't been a terrible start, either. I know he'd like to hit for a bit more power and hit a few more home runs and doubles, but I think that will come.

"I think last year was a huge blow with the shoulder separation, missing the bulk of the season. We tried to get him back [late] in the season. He just wasn't the same guy. We're still hopeful that he'll come back and give us a real good performance here the rest of the way.

Ben Standig is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.