Round One of Spring Training Goes to Austin Voth and Joe Ross

joe ross
Joe Ross looked to strengthen his case for the Nationals’ fifth starter job in his Wednesday outing against the Yankees. (Photo: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports)

Before the start of Spring Training, I touched on the key roster battles the Nationals were faced with. Most of those don’t have significant clarity yet, but one appears to have taken center stage: the fifth starter role.

Aside from Stephen Strasburg and Patrick Corbin who will make their debuts over the next two days and Max Scherzer who just made his second appearance last night — every starter has thrown one time. With that in mind, here’s a look at how round one went for the men whose jobs are most in limbo and how they project going forward. Continue reading “Round One of Spring Training Goes to Austin Voth and Joe Ross”

Washington Nationals Enter Spring Training 2020 With Voids to Fill

Rendon Infield
The Nationals enter life post-Anthony Rendon, which means reconfiguring the infield and top of the lineup. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

Well that was fast! The Washington Nationals are back, and it’s time for them to begin their title defense. With that said, here’s a look at what’s changed since they last took the field and the questions they’ll need to answer. Continue reading “Washington Nationals Enter Spring Training 2020 With Voids to Fill”

The Adventure of Jonny Venters in D.C.

He’s already won Comeback Player of the Year once before. If Jonny Venters pitches next year, he should win it again by default.

Venters has already undergone “three and a half” Tommy John surgeries. He also looked like his prime self — one of the most dominant left-handed relievers in baseball — in 2018. The fact that he was even available in late May (when the Nationals signed him to a minor league contract) was largely due to his checkered past health-wise. Continue reading “The Adventure of Jonny Venters in D.C.”

Fernando Rodney Deserves an Apology

Fernando Rodney is a unique case. Sure, he’s pretty well-removed from his days of being a top 10 closer. He’s not someone who should be relied upon that heavily.

And yet that’s precisely what Dave Martinez did when the Nationals signed him to a minor-league contract in June and purchased him from AAA Fresno shortly thereafter. Continue reading “Fernando Rodney Deserves an Apology”

What Does Tomorrow Hold for Gerardo Parra?

Entering 2019, the Nationals’ outfield depth was a little thin. Juan Soto could’ve theoretically had a sophomore slump, Adam Eaton was an injury risk, Victor Robles was only a rookie, and Michael A. Taylor — need I say more?

Things went from bad to worse when Soto was sent to the 10-day injured list with back spasms in early May.

The patchwork solution was signing Gerardo Parra. But what was a backup outfielder who hit below .200 in over a month in San Francisco really going to fix? Continue reading “What Does Tomorrow Hold for Gerardo Parra?”

Will the Nationals Be Lustin’ for Daniel Hudson?

How many good relievers did the Nationals have prior to the trade deadline? In many people’s eyes, the answer was one: Sean Doolittle. Well, Mike Rizzo did not rest on his laurels, acquiring three solid bullpen pieces at the end of July. Two of them (Roenis Elias and Hunter Strickland) are controllable through 2021, but the team also added one veteran two-month rental. Continue reading “Will the Nationals Be Lustin’ for Daniel Hudson?”