I miss the times when I didn’t have to write these posts. Also when the Nationals were winning, but that’s besides the point.
Ross Detwiler has been on the DL since July 7th with a back strain and would be eligible to return tomorrow, but Davey Johnsonexpects him to miss at least two more starts before beginning a rehab start. GM Mike Rizzo has stated that his decision on potentially trading for a starting pitcher could be influenced by Detwiler’s health, but it sounds like he may not return before the non-waiver trade deadline on July 31st. If he does not, but looks good, would Rizzo be more or less likely to make a move? As he said, “If Detwiler is healthy, that helps me make any and all decisions we have to make.”
Adam LaRoche has missed the Nationals’ last two games with an illness. Davey had hoped on Friday that he could make Saturday’s game, but said on Saturday that he would also miss Sunday’s series finale against the Dodgers and ace lefty Clayton Kershaw. If he gets healthy, it seems likely that he will return Monday against the Pirates.
Ryan Mattheus, on the 60-day DL with a broken hand he suffered punching a locker in San Diego in late May, recently began a minor-league rehab assignment. In three appearances, he has allowed two runs in four innings. His numbers in the minors are irrelevant, with his health being the only concern, but another specter looms larger than his health. When he is indeed healthy, who will make room for him? Drew Storen and Craig Stammen both have options and allowed runs on Saturday, but are both established major league relievers. The only two non-established guys are the lefty callups, Ian Krol and Fernando Abad, both of whom have been excellent. My personal prediction is that Stammen is either optioned down or placed on the DL, as he has not looked like his usual self of late.