Washington Nationals: News and Links 2/14


Oct 7, 2013; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays catcher Jose Lobaton (59) hits the game-winning home run in the 9th inning to defeat the Boston Red Sox 5-4 in game three of the American League divisional series at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

In case you somehow didn’t hear, yesterday was a pretty big day for the Washington Nationals. For starters, pitchers and catchers reported to spring training, officially signalling the beginning of the 2014 season.

While that was huge in its own right, the biggest news we’ve had in weeks came later in the day, as the Nationals acquired catcher Jose Lobaton and two prospects from the Tampa Bay Rays. The Nationals gave up right-handed pitcher Nate Karns, who was recently ranked the ninth best prospect in the Nationals’ farm system by Baseball America.

Finding a backup catcher had been near the top of general manager Mike Rizzo’s to-do list all offseason. It took a while, but in Lobaton, Rizzo has finally found his man. Check out our full breakdown of the deal here.

While Thursday was filled with good news for the Nationals, there was some bad news as well. The team announced that right-handed pitcher Erik Davis has been placed on the 60-day disabled list with a right elbow strain. Davis will be sidelined for six to eight weeks, but he is not expected to require surgery. For more details on the injury, check out our article here.

As of last night, all of the team’s pitchers and catchers had reported to the Nationals’ spring training complex in Viera, Florida. The first team workout is scheduled for tomorrow, and the remaining position players will report Feb. 18. Stay tuned to District on Deck, as we will be covering everything you need to know about the Nationals’ spring training over the next six weeks.

Also, be on the lookout for the latest installment in our National League player rankings series. Today we will be featuring second baseman Anthony Rendon. Stay tuned!