Player News - Nationals

Date: Team: Pos:

Wilmer Difo went 1-for-4 and stole a base as the Nationals fell to the Marlins in Grapefruit League action on Friday.

Difo was hitting out of the leadoff spot in this one. He has had an impressive spring, hitting .318 with a .809 OPS and could give the Nats a reason to keep him on the roster instead of Stephen Drew.
Mar 25 - 12:07 AM

Jacob Turner suffered a loss against the Marlins in Grapefruit League play on Friday, allowing two runs on four hits over his 4 1/3 frames.

The right-hander walked one and struck out three on the night. The former top prospect owns a 5.14 ERA and 1.57 WHIP across 14 innings for the Nationals this spring. He'll open the year as rotation depth at Triple-A Syracuse.
Mar 25 - 12:01 AM

Jeremy Guthrie pitched 4 1/3 hitless innings Fridya in a start against the Cardinals.

Guthrie was brought to camp to compete for a job as a reliever, and he hadn't pitched more than two innings in any of his previous seven appearances before suddenly getting 13 outs today. He's done a nice job to date, with a 2.45 ERA and a 12/5 K/BB ratio in 14 2/3 innings. There's still no real reason for the Nationals to carry him, but maybe someone else will be interested.
Mar 24 - 5:35 PM

Koda Glover gave up three runs in 1 2/3 innings Friday against the Cardinals.

Glover had been working the ninth exclusively of late, but he was brought in for the sixth today. He gave up two runs in his first inning and then was brought back out for the second to give up one more run. Perhaps Dusty Baker is souring on the idea of using him as a closer. The front office would surely prefer Baker stuck with the original plan there, which was Shawn Kelley.
Mar 24 - 5:33 PM

Matt Wieters went hitless Friday and is off to a 2-for-20 start with the Nationals.

Wieters is in a new league and learning a new pitching staff, making hitting the lower priority at the moment. The bat may come along later, but it'd be no surprise if a slow start is in store.
Mar 24 - 5:31 PM

Yahoo Sports' Tim Brown reports that Derek Norris is signing with the Rays.

Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times says it will be a straight one-year contract, although Norris is arbitration-eligible in 2018 so the Rays will have two years of control. Robert Murray of FanRag Sports hears that it came down the Rays and Blue Jays and Norris picked the smaller contract because he thinks he'll have a better chance at playing time in Tampa. He should play pretty regularly with the Rays until Wilson Ramos (knee) is ready for catching duties, which probably won't be for a few months into the season. Norris has solid pop for a catcher but is coming off a season where he put up a hideous .186/.255/.328 batting line.
Mar 24 - 2:27 PM

A.J. Cole (triceps) threw a bullpen session Friday.

Cole was shut down for a few days with triceps soreness. He should have time to get ready by Opening Day if he can avoid a setback, but Cole is set to begin the year in the minors.
Mar 24 - 12:29 PM

A.J. Cole (triceps) remains shut down from throwing but is "feeling better," according to Nationals manager Dusty Baker.

It's unclear when he might be ready to resume a throwing program, but it seems unlikely at this point that he'll be an option for Opening Day. Cole is set to begin the season at Triple-A Syracuse.
Mar 24 - 9:53 AM

Nationals re-assigned RHP Erick Fedde to minor league camp.

Fedde made a favorable impression, putting up a 3.29 ERA and 0.95 WHIP over 13 2/3 innings. He has a shot to debut at some point this season.
Mar 24 - 9:50 AM

Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports the Rays remain interested in free agent Derek Norris but are likely "on the outside looking in."

Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports reported last week that as many as six teams were in on Norris with Tampa Bay being one of them. The Cardinals and Rockies are also known to have interest. The Rays will be without Wilson Ramos for at least the first month and a half, which gives them some incentive to add a catcher. Norris matched a career-high with 14 homers last year but did it while hitting just .186 with 139 strikeouts in 415 at-bats.
Mar 23 - 8:42 PM

Blake Treinen struck out a pair in a scoreless inning to record a save in Thursday's win over the Mets.

Ty Kelly reached on a one-out single, but Treinen got Michael Conforto to ground out and Juan Lagares to go down swinging to close things out. That Treinen pitched the ninth is notable, as Nationals manager Dusty Baker is the rare skipper who likes to pitch his closers in the final inning during spring training. Still, Treinen might be third in the pecking order behind Shawn Kelley and Koda Glover for saves even though he's struck out six over three scoreless frames this spring.
Mar 23 - 5:55 PM

Nationals pitching prospect Erick Fedde spun five shutout innings versus the Mets on Thursday.

And it came against the Mets' Opening Day lineup, minus Travis d'Arnaud. Fedde was superb between High- and Double-A last season in his first year back from Tommy John surgery and has pitched well this spring with a 3.29 ERA and 0.95 WHIP over 13 2/3 innings. He's ranked by MLB.com as the Nationals' No. 2 prospect and could push to debut in 2017.
Mar 23 - 5:51 PM

Michael Taylor is back in Nationals camp Thursday.

Taylor was excused from the club for a week following the death of his father. The funeral is actually on Monday, but Taylor is fighting for a spot on the Nationals' bench and wanted to get back and play.
Mar 23 - 10:34 AM

Stephen Strasburg is lined up to start on Opening Day for the Nationals.

The nod would have gone to reigning National League Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer, but he was slowed this spring by a stress fracture in his right ring finger and currently projects to start Washington's third regular-season game. Gio Gonzalez is in line for the second game of the season, and Tanner Roark likely will start the fourth. Granted, none of this is official yet.
Mar 23 - 8:30 AM

Max Scherzer pitched 4 2/3 innings and allowed two runs Wednesday against the Cardinals.

Scherzer is back using his normal fastball grip without having any issues with the finger in which he suffered a stress fracture. All signs point to him starting the third game of the season for the Nationals.
Mar 22 - 4:05 PM


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