Five Washington Nationals Storylines To Watch In 2016 Spring Training

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Mar 19, 2015; Melbourne, FL, USA; A view of Space Coast Stadium during the game between the Detroit Tigers and the Washington Nationals. Mandatory Credit: Brad Barr-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 19, 2015; Melbourne, FL, USA; A view of Space Coast Stadium during the game between the Detroit Tigers and the Washington Nationals. Mandatory Credit: Brad Barr-USA TODAY Sports /
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Sep 28, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals third baseman Anthony Rendon (6) in the field against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 28, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals third baseman Anthony Rendon (6) in the field against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports /

Health

With all of the parity in Major League Baseball, you usually see the team that has the least amount of serious injuries. Fortunately, for the Nationals, everyone is healthy this year going into camp unlike last year when Jayson Werth underwent shoulder surgery in February.

One of the reasons why the Nationals underachieved last season was due to their vast amount of injuries, but that started in spring training. Denard Span had to have core muscle surgery in the beginning of March (out till early April), Anthony Rendon sprained his MCL diving for a ball in a game against the Braves that ended up preventing the start of his season until June, and Stephen Strasburg had an ankle injury during spring training. While Strasburg didn’t miss any time to start the year, it did have an effect on the way that he pitched at the beginning of the year.

This offseason, the Nationals brought in a new advanced medical staff, whose job is to help detect injuries and allow for faster recovery times. This year, the Nats have an older roster, so that staff will be very intricate to the team’s success.

Of course, injuries are going to happen throughout the season and you would rather have them early in the year, but if the Washington Nationals can stay healthy going into the season, it will help them get off to a better start in 2014 and allow them to find the chemistry and rhythm that seemed to be lacking a season ago.

Next: Battle In The Starting Rotation

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