Two familiar faces and one relatively new one locked down the Washington Nationals’ third straight win over the San Francisco Giants on Wednesday afternoon, with Tanner Rainey in the seventh, Wander Suero in the eighth, and Daniel Hudson in the ninth inning following Joe Ross on the mound in Oracle Park.
Rainey was acquired this winter, in a trade that sent Tanner Roark (who has since been dealt to Oakland) to the Cincinnati Reds. Suero is a product of the Nationals’ minor league system who was signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2010. Hudson though, was one of three of the new arms that GM Mike Rizzo brought in at the Trade Deadline, acquiring the veteran in a trade with the Toronto Blue Jays.
Hudson, right-hander Hunter Strickland, and left-hander Roenis Elías were all added to the Nats’ bullpen before last Wednesday’s deadline passed, bolstering a relief corps that was a disaster at the start of the season and had undergone numerous chances over the first few months of the 2019 campaign.
A week later, after the sweep of the three-game set with the Giants, second-year manager Davey Martinez was asked if he’d gotten comfortable and knew what roles his new bullpen arms would slot into going forward.
“When we got them you know what they are,” he explained. “They’ve all pitched in the back end of the bullpen and done really well. So with those two guys [Hudson and Strickland] and then getting Elías back here fairly soon, we’re going to be okay. Like I’ve said, we have options, with all those guys, [closer Sean] Doolittle obviously couldn’t pitch today, and so we had Daniel and he did great.”
Nationals fans who registered their opinions in this week’s SB Nation FanPulse voting think Rizzo and Co. in the Nats’ front office did a good job of solidifying the relief corps with the deadline deals they made.
Fans were also asked which team looks the strongest following the trade deadline (though they were limited to just six options, and adding Zack Greinke was really the biggest move that was made).
Where are you on these questions? If you didn’t participate in the FanPulse survey the first three weeks, you can still sign up above or HERE.