Nationals: Washington Made A Flurry Of Roster Moves
By Max Rayman
Monday was a busy day for the Nationals, with the team promoting multiple prospects throughout the ranks.
Today has been anything but slow on the Nationals front. It was announced this morning that the team’s top-pitching prospect Cade Cavalli, 2017 first-round pick Seth Romero, and Andrew Lee were all promoted to Triple-A.
Cavalli’s promotion was the biggest news of the day. Drafted in 2020, Cavalli has flown up the ranks this season and leads MiLB in strikeouts. He started the year at High-A, going 3-1, with a 1.77 ERA, and 71 strikeouts in 40.2 innings. His dominance led to his promotion to Double-A where he went 3-3, with a 2.79 ERA, and 80 strikeouts in 58 innings.
Cavalli will need to work on his control, with batters laying off his out of the zone pitches more and more in AA. He walked 35 batters at AA compared to only 12 at A+.
Before he was drafted, Romero was known for his off-the-field issues that followed him to the Minor Leagues. He underwent Tommy John surgery at the end of the 2018 season which culminated in him missing all of 2019. Recently, Romero has seen to put his antics behind him and has benefited from it. The plan is for him to stay stretched out as a starter even though he has been working out of the bullpen.
Lee has shown flashes of success this season when he was used out of the bullpen. In 12 relief appearances, he posted a 0.65 ERA, with 31 strikeouts, and only 12 walks.
However, this was just the beginning. It was then announced the Nationals had promoted a trio of their most recent draft picks. Darren Baker, Dustin Saenz, and Cole Quintanilla were all sent to Low-A after starting out in the Rookie League.
Then, the Nationals announced they had recalled Patrick Murphy and Sam Clay from AAA while optioning Gabe Klobosits back to AAA. Jefry Rodriguez became the odd man out and was DFAed.
Patrick Murphy was recently claimed off of Waivers from Toronto and immediately slotted in as the Nationals 18th ranked prospect per MLB Pipeline. Murphy was inconsistent with the Blue Jays this year (4.82 ERA, 5.21 FIP, 9.1 IP), but he posted a 1.50 ERA in six innings in 2019.
Klobosits’s demotion was a surprise, seeing how the team is in the midst of a rebuild and should be giving their young core as many reps as possible. While he has struggled, he needs to show if he can stick or not, and sending him back to the minors isn’t the way. In his place is Sam Clay who has looked overwhelmed at times this season.
It was also reported that Aldo Ramirez had been activated from the IL.
Acquired in the Kyle Schwarber trade, Ramirez will start in the rookie league as he builds his strength back up. The Nats also promoted Joan Adon to AA. After a busy day, it will be exciting to see how the youngsters perform in their new homes.