The Washington Nationals announced tonight that they had added two right-handed pitchers, Nathan Karns and Erik Davis to the 40-Man roster, protecting both from the upcoming Rule 5 Draft. Karns, a 24-year-old '09 12th Round pick was named the Nats' Minor League Pitcher of the Year after going (11-4) with a 2.17 ERA, 47 walks (3.65 BB/9) and 148 Ks (11.48 K/9) in 24 games, 18 starts and 116.0 IP between Class-A Hagerstown and High-A Potomac this season. Davis, who turned 26 in October, was acquired by the Nationals in a March 2011 trade that sent infielder Alberto Gonzalez to San Diego. The '08 13th Round pick moved into a bullpen role with the Nats after starting in the Padres' system and went (8-3) with five saves, a 2.71 ERA, 20 walks (2.47 BB/9) and 74 Ks (9.12 K/9) in 48 games and 73.0 IP.
Among those Rule 5 eligible players left unprotected by the Nationals were 25-year-old left-hander Danny Rosenbaum, who was (8-10) with a 3.94 ERA, 3.41 FIP, 39 BB (2.26 BB/9) and 99 Ks (5.74 K/9) in 26 games and 155.1 IP at Double-A Harrisburg this season; 22-year-old, '08 2nd Round pick Destin Hood, who had a .242/.301/.339 line with 21 doubles, three triples and three home runs in 99 games and 409 PAs between Class-A Auburn and Double-A Harrisburg in his fifth minor league season; and 27-year-old right-hander Jeff Mandel, who was (10-9) with a 3.50 ERA, 36 walks (2.17 BB/9) and 86 Ks (5.18 K/9) in 30 games, 22 starts and 149.1 IP between Double-A and Triple-A Syracuse in 2012.
With the two additions, the Nationals' 40-Man Roster now stands at 38. There was some speculation that there might be some movement with players already on the 40-Man Roster like LHP John Lannan and C Jesus Flores, who are not expected to be tendered contracts for the 2013 season, but there were no other moves announced by the Nationals tonight.