WASHINGTON – Cody Wilson, an outfielder, made his Major League debut with the Nationals on April 7 while right-handed pitcher Joan Adon – in a more impressive entrance – started for Washington and pitched well on Sunday in his first big league game.
Wilson, 25, born in West Palm Beach, Florida, on July 4, 1996, played for Winchester in the Valley Baseball League of Virginia while in college at Florida Atlantic, while Adon, 23, is another Washington player from the Dominican Republic.
In between those disparate appearances – Wilson was retired in his only at-bat in The Show to this point – several other players made their Major League debut this past season while wearing the Washington uniform.
Here is a look at just four of them, in no particular order.
(This doesn’t consider players such as Lane Thomas, Josiah Gray and Keibert Ruiz, who had already played in the majors with another team before coming to the Nationals in trades).
Joan Adon – First
It would be hard to match, among Washington newcomers, the first game for Adon.
Facing a powerful, playoff lineup here on Sunday at Nationals Park against the Red Sox, the pitcher who began the season at Single-A Wilmington more than held his own and lasted longer than Boston starter Chris Sale.
Adon went 5.1 innings and gave up six hits and two earned runs. The bullpen cost him a victory in his first game as the Red Sox came back to win.
He struck out nine – the most by a pitcher making his debut in the majors this year.
“At the end, he did get a little bit tired,” Davey Martinez told reporters Sunday. “But you’ve got to understand, his first time, a big crowd, he looked great. He didn’t let the crowd affect him. He went out and did his thing. His stuff was really, really good. I’m looking forward to him coming to Spring Training.”
Jhon Romero – Second
Romero, 26 and from Colombia, made his debut on Sept. 24 with a scoreless inning against the Reds.
The right-hander ended up making five overall appearances in the final weeks of the year, with an ERA of 4.50 in four innings of work.
Jakson Reetz – Third
Let’s be honest: Reetz, 25, is not the catcher of the future for the Nationals.
But he should be awarded some good vibes for his patience.
Drafted out of a Nebraska high school in 2014 by the Nationals, he worked his way up the ladder and made hit debut on July 10 at the Giants at a time the team was short of catchers.
Reetz played in two games and had one hit in two at-bats with Washington.
He also spent time at Double-A Harrisburg and Triple-A Rochester this season
“It was great to see him get an opportunity in the big leagues,” Double-A Harrisburg manager Tripp Keister told Federal Baseball before a game last month on City Island.
Gabe Klobosits – Fourth
While Reetz was a high pick, Klobosits was not: how about the 36th round in 2017 out of Auburn?
He made his debut at Washington on July 30 against the Cubs. He had an ERA of 5.56 in 11 games out of the bullpen for the Nationals.