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Nationals' Luis Garcia: Not guaranteed second base job
Nationals manager Dave Martinez said Monday that Garcia is not guaranteed the second base job going into next season, Andrew Golden of The Washington Post reports.
Garcia battled through a disappointing 2023 campaign, slashing just .266/.304/.385 while spending some time back in the minors. The 23-year-old remains talented and would seem to be the odds-on favorite to man second base on Opening Day for the Nationals, but the gig won't be handed to him. Jake Alu, Ildemaro Vargas and Jeter Downs represent potential alternatives to Garcia at the keystone.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Joey Meneses: Played through knee injury
Nationals manager Dave Martinez revealed Monday that Meneses played through a knee injury this season, Andrew Golden of The Washington Post reports.
It's not clear when Meneses' knee began bothering him, but Martinez indicated it's a big reason why the 31-year-old was basically a full-time designated hitter. With Dominic Smith no longer around, Martinez would like to use Meneses some at first base in 2024 and possibly even some in the outfield. As for how Meneses is progressing in his recovery from the knee problem, Martinez said the right-handed hitter is "doing a lot of agility stuff" this offseason and "looks good so far."... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Victor Robles: Not yet fully healthy
Nationals manager Dave Martinez said Monday that Robles (back) hasn't yet been cleared to participate in games during the Dominican Winter League, Mark Zuckerman of MASNSports.com reports.
Robles didn't play after June 20 this past season while dealing with lumbar spine spasms, an injury that proved to be more significant than the Nationals initially anticipated. The outfielder was expected to make up for the three-plus months of lost action by playing regularly in his native Dominican Republic this offseason, but he apparently has yet to fully move past the back issue. Though he's still just 26 years old, Robles' prospect star has long since faded, and he no longer appears to be viewed as a key part of the Nationals' long-term plans after he had his $3.3 million club option for 2024 declined earlier this winter. Robles is still on the books for the upcoming season after renegotiating a new one-year deal with Washington at a lower salary, but he'll probably need to overcome the back injury and turn in solid production in what's left of winter ball to enter spring training as the clear frontrunner for the starting job in center field.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Joe La Sorsa: Sent outright to Triple-A
The Nationals outrighted La Sorsa to Triple-A Rochester on Friday, Andrew Golden of The Washington Post reports.
La Sorsa posted a 4.41 ERA and 28:9 K:BB over 32.2 innings of relief this past year between the Rays and Nats. He is now off the 40-man roster in Washington.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Stone Garrett: Resumes running
Garrett (fibula) said that he's no longer wearing a boot on his left foot and was able to resume running on a treadmill Monday, Bobby Blanco of MASNSports.com reports.
Garret underwent surgery in late August to address a fractured fibula and also had a procedure on his ankle, resulting in him behind slightly behind schedule as he begins his offseason training program. The 28-year-old said he's still aiming to be ready to go for spring training, and the fact that he's already running three months before position players report to camp is a positive sign. Garrett served primarily as a short-side platoon option at left field and designated hitter in 2023, batting .269 with nine home runs, three stolen bases, 40 RBI and 40 runs over 89 games.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Victor Robles: Staying in Washington
Robles agreed to a one-year contract with the Nationals on Tuesday, avoiding arbitration, Mark Zuckerman of MASNSports.com reports.
The Nationals declined a $3.3 million club option to keep Robles for 2024, but the two sides negotiated a smaller contract to keep him on the active roster. Given Washington's lack of quality internal options, Robles may play a decent amount early on in his age-26/27 season despite being worth 0.6 fWAR in 275 games over the past three seasons. Robles should hit at the bottom of the order when he plays. He has stolen at least eight bases in each of the last three campaigns and stole eight in 36 games last year while battling back spasms.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Tanner Rainey: Avoids arbitration
Rainey agreed to a one-year, $1.5 million contract with the Nationals on Tuesday, avoiding arbitration, Mark Zuckerman of MASNSports.com reports.
The 30-year-old righty missed almost all of 2023 on the road back from Tommy John surgery, but he tossed a scoreless inning against Atlanta on Sept. 30 and averaged 96.3 mph with his fastball. He should work in a setup role for Washington in 2024.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Mitchell Parker: Added to 40-man roster
The Nationals selected Parker's contract from Triple-A Rochester on Tuesday, Andrew Golden of The Washington Post reports.
Parker is now on the 40-man roster and protected from the Rule 5 Draft. The 24-year-old southpaw collected a 4.72 ERA and 150:61 K:BB over 124 innings between Double-A Harrisburg and Rochester in 2023. He'll likely return to Rochester to begin next season.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' DJ Herz: Gets spot on 40-man
The Nationals selected Herz to their 40-man roster Tuesday.
Herz was acquired from the Cubs this past July as part of the Jeimer Candelario trade and is now protected from being plucked away from another organization in next month's Rule 5 Draft. The 22-year-old left-hander holds a career 3.64 ERA with a whopping 413 strikeouts in 281.2 total minor-league innings.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Cory Abbott: Loses 40-man roster spot
The Nationals designated Abbott for assignment Tuesday, Andrew Golden of The Washington Post reports.
The Nats needed to free up some space on the 40-man roster prior to the Rule 5 protection deadline and Abbott is one of the casualties. Abbott posted a 6.64 ERA across 22 relief appearances with the big club in 2023 and seems likely to pass through waivers unclaimed.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Cole Henry: Selected to 40-man roster
The Nationals selected Henry to their 40-man roster Tuesday.
Henry missed a lot of time between the 2022-23 seasons while recovering from thoracic outlet syndrome surgery, but he's healthy now and will try to make his way back up the Nats' organizational prospect rankings in 2024. Being added to the 40-man roster means he'll be protected from selection in next month's Rule 5 Draft.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Dominic Smith: Designated for assignment
The Nationals designated Smith for assignment Tuesday, Andrew Golden of The Washington Post reports.
Smith is due a bit of a raise in his final year of arbitration eligibility and the Nationals evidently weren't willing to give him a salary bump. The 28-year-old made $2 million in 2023 while slashing just .254/.326/.366 with 12 home runs over 153 games. Smith is still just 28, but with a .666 OPS since the start of the 2021 season, it might be difficult for him to find regular at-bats in 2024.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Zach Brzykcy: Added to 40-man roster
The Nationals selected Brzykcy (elbow) to their 40-man roster Tuesday.
Brzycky did not pitch in 2023 because of a forearm/elbow injury that eventually led to Tommy John surgery, but he is expected to return at some point in 2024 and is now protected from selection in next month's Rule 5 Draft. The 24-year-old right-hander carries a 3.49 ERA with 181 strikeouts in 123.2 career minor-league innings.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Jeremy De La Rosa: Outrighted to Triple-A
De La Rosa cleared waivers Friday and was sent outright to Triple-A Rochester, Mark Zuckerman of MASNSports.com reports.
De La Rosa has yet to advance past High-A ball in his professional career, so it's likely he returns to High-A Wilmington or moves up to Double-A Harrisburg to begin 2024. The 21-year-old outfield prospect slashed .240/.324/.361 with 42 RBI across 383 plate appearances with Wilmington this season and no longer holds a spot on the 40-man roster.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Matt Cronin: Sent outright to Triple-A
Cronin (back) was sent outright Friday to Triple-A Rochester, Andrew Golden of The Washington Post reports.
Cronin passed through waivers unclaimed after being designated for assignment by the Nationals on Monday. The 26-year-old left-hander battled back problems in 2023 and struggled to a 5.02 ERA and 13:14 K:BB in 14.1 innings with Triple-A Rochester. He underwent surgery in August to repair a herniated disc.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Matt Cronin: Designated for assignment
Cronin (back) was designated for assignment by the Nationals on Monday, Andrew Golden of The Washington Post reports.
The Nationals did some 40-man roster housecleaning Monday and Cronin has lost his spot. Cronin, who has never appeared in the majors, underwent back surgery in August and it's unclear when he might be ready to pitch again.... See More ... See Less
Nationals' Victor Robles: Club option declined
The Nationals declined Robles' (back) $3.3 million club option for 2024 on Thursday, Andrew Golden of The Washington Post reports.
Robles won't immediately become a free agent, though, because he carries one more year of arbitration eligibility. A former top-10 prospect, the 26-year-old was limited to 36 major-league games in 2023 because of a lingering back injury and owns a disappointing .238/.312/.360 career slash line in 1,801 plate appearances at baseball's highest level.... See More ... See Less