Nationals eyeing Doolittle, Madson

Nationals eyeing Doolittle, Madson

Nationals eyeing Doolittle, Madson

OAKLAND The last remaining piece from the Oakaland A's three-year playoff run from 2012-14 is gone.

The Washington Nationals could have a fortified bullpen Monday afternoon when they look to complete a four-game sweep of the Cincinnati Reds. Doolittle joins Josh Donaldson and Yoenis Cespedes as popular former All-Stars who were traded by Oakland, which is rumored to be on the brink of trading starter Sonny Gray, another ex-All-Star. I grew up in the green & gold and I appreciate everything the A's have done for me over the last 10 years. "I'm super grateful for the opportunity the A's gave me, allowing me to transition to pitching".

"I know the guys will feel this a little bit but we're on a little bit different course right now", Melvin said. "It just shows you what we're going to bring in the second half". Oakland got Blake Treinen and prospects Jesus Lozardo and Sheldon Neuse from Washington. After the 2017 draft, he likely ranks near the bottom of a Nats top-10 prospects list. He was originally selected in the third round of the 2016 First-Year Player Draft.

After an off 2016, Madson has returned to his peak form this year, striking out almost a batter per inning and walking just 1.5 per nine en route to a 2.27 ERA and 2.65 FIP.

Serving nearly as Manaea's confirmation in the ace role, Melvin didn't even consider pulling the 25-year-old with two down and runners at the corners, following a walk, 111 pitches into the starter's afternoon in the seventh. He's 0-2 with a 5.73 ERA and 1.62 WHIP this season.

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Rizzo said he wasn't sure when Madson and Doolittle would be joining the Nationals. The lefty was holding opponents to a.158 batting average, including 0-for-23 by left-handed hitters.

"It's really surreal", Doolittle said. "There are no hard feelings". This year, he has a 3.31 ERA with 31 strikeouts in 21.1 innings. (He) was more fastball-changeup - and mix in some sliders - to where it was 50-50, and now that third pitch ... he's got three plus-pitches that can make you swing and miss.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reported the news.

Both Doolittle and Madson would conceivably help the Nationals bullpen turn things around. If they could acquire someone like Pat Neshek, they could have Madson as the closer, Neshek and Doolittle as the left-right setup men, and Albers and Romero as the left-right seventh-inning guys, with Perez as a lefty matchup guy and Blanton or Kelley as mopup.

Although Washington's payroll plumped up with the addition of Madson and Doolittle (combined, they're owed more than $5 million for the remainder of this season and just over $12 million next year), general manager Mike Rizzo didn't have to part with outfielder Victor Robles or any of the club's other most prized prospects.

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