Washington Nationals finalize roster as spring winds down
By Drew Douglas
With Opening Day finally within reach, the Washington Nationals have finalized their roster. That and more in today’s Daily Washingtonian.
Good morning, Washington Nationals fans!
Today is March 27, 2018, which means there will be a professional baseball game played at Nationals Park today! It does not count — you have to wait until Thursday for the first meaningful game — but there will be a game played at Nationals Park nonetheless.
After a long, uneventful offseason, the Nats are finally ready for the season to begin.
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Fortunately, the Nats’ spring followed the same uneventful trend as their offseason. Of course, there were the typical spring occurrences, such as camels at the facility and golf tournaments on the practice fields.
While these may not have fit our description of typical spring occurrences a few months ago, that has now changed with Dave Martinez at the helm. Don’t be surprised to see similar spectacles throughout the year.
All kidding aside, the Nats had a fairly uneventful spring. They remained mostly unscathed, with Daniel Murphy being the only projected starter to begin the year of the shelf. For a team with a history of being exceptionally injury-prone, this is great news.
Now, the Nats’ Opening Day roster appears to be set. There was one surprise — the implementation of an eight-man bullpen — but the roster is mostly what we expected.
With Opening Day right around the corner and the roster set, here’s what we are reading:
District on Deck projects the starting rotation
Led by Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg, the Nats have one of the best pitching staffs in the league. The fifth spot is not quite what it has been in years past, with A.J. Cole filling the role, but they should still be a force to be reckoned with. I projected what to expect from each of the starting five.
MLB Trade Rumors updates Jeremy Hellickson’s status
The Nats signed veteran Jeremy Hellickson late in spring training to compete with Cole for the final spot in the rotation. Although Hellickson will not be ready for Opening Day, he has a good chance to see some time in the bigs this year. Mark Polishuk updates us on the Nats’ recent administrative transaction regarding Hellickson’s contract.
WTOP on Adam Eaton’s second chance at a first impression
In a very controversial trade last offseason, the Nats parted with three of their top pitching prospects to acquire Adam Eaton. He got off to a great start, silencing the critics, but suffered a season-ending knee injury in late-April. Dave Preston discusses Eaton’s second chance to make a first impression.
MASN recaps some spring storylines
Spring training is an emotional time for everyone; baseball is finally back, and everyone wants to overanalyze every little move after the long offseason. While some things do warrant some discussion, others should not be discussed much. Mark Zuckerman lists storylines that we made too big a deal about and what we glossed over.
Next: Is an eight-man bullpen the right move?
Tonight’s game will not be televised, so try to make it over to Nationals Park if you can, and enjoy the final meaningless game. We do this for real in just TWO DAYS!