How are past Nationals faring with their new teams?
Opening Day weekend is in the book, but the Nationals have yet to start their season. Due to a COVID outbreak amongst the team, Washington has to wait till later this afternoon to start things off. In the meantime, Nationals fans have been left on the outside looking in. All eyes have mostly been on former Nats as they settle in with their new teams. But how are some former Nats performing to start 2021?
Washington’s right fielder from 2017-2020, Adam Eaton returned to the White Sox, with whom he played for from 2014-2016. In his first game back with his old team, Eaton hit a two run homer, but finished the game 1-4, with two RBIs. This was the second year in a row that the veteran homered on Opening Day. Through the team’s first four games, Eaton is hitting .250, with a homer, three RBIs, and an OPS of .806.
During his last year in D.C., Eaton’s defense started to deteriorate. Sadly, he has yet to bounce back on that end. He already has two errors committed which have led to two runs. The White Sox have lofty expectations but, lost three of four to the Angels in their opening series.
After being a pivotal part of the Nationals bullpen for the last four seasons, Sean Doolittle found himself a new home in Cincinnati. During Spring Training, Doolittle struggled immensely, posting a 14.63 ERA in only eight innings. He was wildly inconsistent, allowing four homers, striking out eight, and walking eight. Many were worried for Doolittle’s performance and wondered if the end was near.
Doolittle has made three appearance’s so far, and has been lights out. In 2.2 innings, he has yet to allow a run, while giving up one hit, walking one, and striking out five. He even picked up the win last night against the Pirates.
Most notably, his velocity on his fastball has averaged 94 mph, while topping out at 96 mph. A year ago, his velocity was down to 89-90 mph, causing the alarm bells to go off. It is very reinsuring to see the Doctor back to his old self.
Michael A. Taylor
Despite being known for his clutch postseason performances, Michael A. Taylor failed to win a full time starting job in the outfield. After seven seasons in D.C., Taylor signed in the off-season with the Royals. Three games into the season and the speedster is already making his presence felt with his new club. So far, he is hitting .438, with two homers, seven RBIs, and an OPS of 1.346.
Taylor’s bat has already helped the Royals come back to win in two separate games. On Opening Day, the Royals were down 5-0, before storming back to win 14-10, thanks in part to Taylor’s three RBI’s. On Saturday, the Rangers led 4-0, before the Royals came back to win 11-4. Once again, Taylor came through with three RBI’s and homered in his second straight game.
While he only has 16 at bats this season, Taylor has left an early impression on his new club. Hopefully he can keep it going.