Washington’s Nationals are holding their first workouts of Spring Training 2.0 today, and the Nats’ skipper, Davey Martinez, and GM, Mike Rizzo, will talk to reporters for the first time — at what is apparently being called “Summer Camp” though we’re not really like totally, 100% & unquestioningly on board with that — to update everyone on how things are going for the defending World Series champions after a three-months-plus break. Will it all actually, like really, happen, with games and stuff amidst the ongoing coronavirus pandemic? We’ll see.
Go read your links, and stop back for more information later today...
Max Scherzer is sort of OK with no longer hitting - (NBC Sports Washington)
"If Scherzer never hits again, he will finish with a .193 batting average. He hit one home run. It came in 2017 against Chris O'Grady of the Miami Marlins."
Brzykcy brings 100 mph fastball to future Nats bullpen - (MASN)
"The Nationals confirmed Wednesday that they have agreed to terms with nine undrafted free agents, including Virginia Tech right-handed fireballer Zach Brzykcy."
The crazy story of Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer, Corey Kluber, Paul Goldschmidt, Giancarlo Stanton & other MLB stars and the underground sandlot games no one knew about.— Britt Ghiroli (@Britt_Ghiroli) July 2, 2020
“We would’ve had 10,000 people there.”
For @TheAthletic: https://t.co/2VHpOQCp4T
Nats' Eric Thames believes 'baseball can work' despite coronavirus pandemic - (NBC Sports Washington)
"Thames arrived at Nats Park on Wednesday to get tested for COVID-19, as every MLB player is required to do upon reporting to their respective team sites."
Some pressing on-field questions as Nats prepare to return - (MASN)
"Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg, Patrick Corbin, Aníbal Sánchez and Co. reported for spring training having worked out a program designed to ease them in after their heavy workloads straight through October."
Nationals open 'summer camp' Friday with important questions looming - (Washington Times)
"The baseball world is headed to summer camp. The s’mores and bunk beds are optional, but playing sports outside is not."
MLB roundtable: Which contender is most vulnerable entering shortened 2020 season? - (CBSSports.com)
"[The Nationals] were close to finished so many times last season and they deserve all the credit in the world for winning the World Series despite that."
Analyzing the Prospect Player Pool: NL East - (FanGraphs)
"Most of the prospects in Washington’s player pool are pitchers I expect will be at the offsite camp early on, as all but James Bourque are not currently on the 40-man roster..."
Tyson Ross, currently a free agent, will join his brother Joe, a Nats pitcher, in sitting out this season. Both pitchers have given it a lot of thought. Their dad is a doctor, their mom a nurse.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) July 2, 2020
These World Series champs would have missed the playoffs in a 60-game season - (ESPN)
"The Nationals famously started the 2019 season with a 19-31 record, but played at a torrid pace the rest of the way (74-38, tied for best in MLB) to secure a berth in the NL wild-card game."
Yankees Owner Steinbrenner Expects Home Fans This Season - (Forbes)
"Steinbrenner reportedly told YES’ Meredith Marakovits that he’s had 'many conversations' with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo about having fans during the shortened 60-game Major League Baseball season, which is expected to begin on July 23 with the Yankees traveling to Washington to take on the defending champion Nationals."
Washington Nationals’ Max Scherzer Buys Jupiter Mansion - (The Real Deal)
"Washington Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer bought a waterfront mansion in Jupiter for $9.8 million, sources told The Real Deal."
Minor League Baseball Players Navigate an Uncertain Path After Canceled Season - (Washington City Paper)
"In a few days, Lucas Knowles will return to his home in Belfair, Washington, a tiny town an hour and a half from Seattle, with a population under 5,000."
NL EAST UPDATES:
'Whatever it takes' -- Girardi ready for challenges - (MLB.com)
"Joe Girardi thinks this can work. It will be difficult, of course. The Phillies face countless challenges as they begin Summer Camp on Friday at Citizens Bank Park and FDR Park."
Yoenis Cespedes only start of Mets’ DH bonanza for MLB 2020 season - (NY Post)
"When full-squad workouts begin Friday at Citi Field in preparation for the planned 60-game season, Cespedes will be the extravagance the Mets covet for an already talented lineup."
Without prototypical DH, Miami to use rotation - (MLB.com)
"For the Marlins, who gets the DH nod could depend upon matchups and who is hot. In constructing its 2020 roster, the Marlins’ front office wasn’t considering the possibility of pitchers not hitting."
Braves hold first team workouts Friday - (AJC.com)
"The Braves’ season begins Friday when the team holds its first formal workout at Truist Park. It comes 113 days after they played their last game..."