When 33-year-old, nine-year veteran Chris Young signed with the Washington Nationals earlier this Spring, agreeing to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training, the right-hander had a clause in the contract that allowed him to opt out after March 24th if he didn't seem likely to make the defending NL East Champion's Opening Day roster. Young told reporters upon joining the Nats that he was finally healthy two years after surgery to repair a torn anterior capsule in his right shoulder. The Nationals' rotation was set, however, barring any injuries, setbacks or hiccups, so the possibility of the starter cracking the OD roster seemed to be a longshot. Young saw the writing on the wall and last night opted out of the deal, telling reporters he had interest from other teams around the league.
Before he made the decision to opt out of the deal, Young threw 4.0 innings against the Houston Astros last night giving up two hits, a walk and one unearned run in a 62-pitch start. In 16.0 Grapefruit League innings this Spring, Young allowed 11 hits, seven walks and five runs, four earned, while striking out nine. Young told reporters last night that his agent had discussed a deal that could potentially keep him in the Nationals' organization, and as CSN Washington's Mark Zuckerman wrote on Twitter Monday night, the Nats could have added the right-hander to their roster if they planned on keeping him in the organization:
Chris Young has filed paperwork to opt out, but #Nats have 24 hours to put him on roster. Hopeful they might work something out.— Mark Zuckerman (@ZuckermanCSN) March 26, 2013
Though Young was in camp with Washington this morning, the Nationals have reported that they have now given the right-hander his unconditional release:
#Nationals today granted RHP Chris Young his unconditional release. Now 30 players in Major League camp.— Nationals PR (@NationalsPR) March 26, 2013
According to report from MLB.com's Bill Ladson, no deal with another team is imminent:
Chris Young said he is going to meet with his agent today and discuss the options he has. He is not close to signing with a team. #Nats #MLB— William Ladson (@washingnats) March 26, 2013