The Nationals claimed left-handed pitcher Joe La Sorsa off waivers yesterday, per the team. La Sorsa was DFA'd by the Tampa Bay Rays on June 3rd. La Sorsa will report to Triple-A Rochester.
The lefty reliever has only two appearances in the major leagues this year, where he's faced 20 batters and has tallied 3 strikeouts through 4.1 innings pitched, and has earned a 2.08 ERA.
Drafted in the 18th round of the 2019 MLB Draft by Tampa Bay, La Sorsa certainly paid his dues in the minors, spending the first four years of his career there. He totaled a 16-10 record and posted a 2.87 ERA over his 99 game minor-league career.
Aside from his noticable minor league stats, La Sorsa also represented Italy in the 2023 World Baseball Classic, where he showed the world his competitive spirit with this absolute gem of a clip.
This acquisition comes at a time where the Nationals bullpen needs all the help they can get. Losers of the 9 of their last 11 games, a good chunk of Washington's pitching staff has come under fire for poor performances as of late; especially the bullpen. The Nationals are also without a lefty in their bullpen.
This is a good move for the Nationals. As a franchise, they stand in a position where they need to be sifting through players who deserve a second chance and hand out low-risk, high-upside deals. Jeimer Candelario is a perfect example of this; Mike Rizzo offered him a one year deal to see what he could do after a few down seasons with the Tigers.
Sure enough, Jeimer has flipped the script and has become quite the productive player and may be someone who can be moved at the deadline for a return.
The Nationals cannot afford to let unproductive players (or groups) sit around and not do much of anything if they don't have a future with the team. Roster spots are valuable, so why not take risks on players like La Sorsa?
I'll be curious to see what La Sorsa brings to Rochester in the short term future, and also what he could bring to the Nationals bullpen that certainly needs help.
All statistics via baseball-reference.com