⚾️⚾️ The Morning Briefing: Nationals sign minor league pitcher
Here are the latest headlines and analyses around the Washington Nationals and Major League Baseball for today, December 18.
Good Morning Washington Nationals Fans,
Here are the latest headlines and analyses around the Washington Nationals and Major League Baseball for today, December 18, 2023. My name is Haden and let’s dive into the news.
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Leading today’s Morning Briefing: Nationals sign righty Watkins on a minor league deal
The Washington Nationals signed right-handed pitcher Spenser Watkins to a minor league deal, according to Andrew Golden of The Washington Post. Spenser Watkins has thrown 164.1 innings over the last three seasons. In those 164.1 innings, Watkins had an ERA of 5.97 and a 5.07 FIP.
This move adds depth to the rotation in Triple-A, a current weakness within the organization. Watkins should join lefties Mitchell Parker and DJ Herz and right-handed starter Thaddeus Ward. Left-handed starter Dustin Saenz and someone not making the rotation out of camp in Spring Training, like Jackson Rutledge, could also start the season in Rochester.
Around the MLB
The Kansas City Royals were not done. They went out and added right-handed pitcher Michael Wacha to a two-year $32M deal, according to Jeff Passan of ESPN. Wacha is just the newest name to join the Royals rotation with Seth Lugo now slotting behind Wacha and breakout ace Cole Ragans.
The Arizona Diamondbacks re-signed corner outfielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. to a three-year, $42M deal according to Jeff Passan and Kiley McDaniel of ESPN. Gurriel was a key cog in that Diamondbacks lineup, and while he had a few down months last season, that could be attributed to rushing back from an injury. When right, Gurriel provides middle-of-the-order production as a right-handed bat. The DBacks likely are looking to add one more bat, probably as a designated hitter, to round out their lineup.
The Atlanta Braves acquired yet another bad contract, this time getting Matt Carpenter, reliever Ray Kerr, and $1.5M according to the teams, with Dennis Lin of The Athletic being the first on the money. The Braves released Carpenter this morning. In all, the Padres saved $4M in this deal, while a depth reliever for pretty much nothing.
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