The best plans in baseball, when you play outdoors, can be altered by the weather, and this has been a recurring theme in 2017 to the frustration of many.
The Nationals have Erick Fedde making his MLB debut today in the first game of this day/night double-header.
Fedde goes up against a good Colorado offense while the Nationals have a lineup that looks like a March 15th Spring Training split-squad. Howie Kendrick ostensibly takes the place of Daniel Murphy and Fedde’s battery-mate is not the familiar Pedro Severino rather Jose Lobaton. The middle infielders are Adrian Sanchez and Wilmer Difo and the centerfielder is Brian Goodwin of which all 3 we’re in Syracuse this year. That makes for 4 Syracuse players and new acquisition Howie Kendrick with Bryce Harper, Ryan Zimmerman and Anthony Rendon as the only projected starting players who were on the Nationals’ opening day roster. The 9th player in the lineup is Jose Lobaton who is the Nationals backup catcher.
Here's how we're lining up for Game 1 of the doubleheader. pic.twitter.com/F9mJ1QQb71
— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) July 30, 2017
Perhaps the most interesting decision comes from today’s roster moves which was a complicated amalgam of moves. Erick Fedde required a roster spot plus a 40-man roster spot. The 40-man roster spot came from a DFA of Chris Heisey who was on the 10-day disabled list. Doing a DFA on a DL’d player is considered “mercenary” and something GM Mike Rizzo had never done before but it seemed the right move as Heisey was ostensibly replaced by new acquisition Howie Kendrick this weekend.
MLB rules allow for a 26th man to be added for double-headers and Fedde could have been added or a long-man for relief. Instead Rizzo added Fedde to the roster and removed third catcher Pedro Severino from the active roster and optioned him back to Triple-A Syracuse and simultaneously brought Severino back as the 26th man.
The Nationals bullpen should be a man down with Matt Albers throwing 24 pitches last night which leaves the bullpen with Joe Blanton, Sean Doolittle, Matt Grace, Ryan Madson, Oliver Perez, Enny Romero and Sammy Solis. That’s 7 men to cover potentially a lot of innings.
Where is the long-inning man and who’s the Wednesday starting pitcher since that was supposed to be Tanner Roark who pitched yesterday due to Friday’s rainout.
If the Nats starters don’t go at least 12 innings combined today this is going to be an over used bullpen leading into tomorrow’s game with the Marlins in Miami.
Maybe Pedro Severino is a long-man and we weren’t aware.
The Rockies did callup a reliever who can go long as their 26th man:
RHP Carlos Estévez the #Rockies' 26th man for today’s doubleheader at Nationals Park.
— Rockies PR (@RockiesPR) July 30, 2017
On a side-note, Ivan Rodriguez gets inducted into the Hall-of-Fame today and becomes the first Nationals player to receive that honor.