Picking up where we left off, here’s a continuation of grades for the Nationals offseason additions. You can find part one to this segment by clicking here.
Anibal Sanchez: B-
This offseason, the Nationals essentially traded Tanner Roark for Anibal Sanchez, by trading Roark to the Reds for Tanner Rainey in order to make room for salary and roster space, and then signing Sanchez. So far, the move has not worked in their favor, with Tanner Roark having an ERA of 3.74 compared to Sanchez’s 4.19. Roark came off one of his worst years in memory, while Sanchez pitched a stellar 2.89 ERA for the Atlanta Braves. However, after two months, Roark has been the better player and the Nationals have found themselves craving pitching depth. Still, Sanchez is a serviceable pitcher, provides a veteran presence, and his performance has been drastically improving these past few weeks.
— Michael Augustine (@AugustineMLB) June 6, 2019
Trevor Rosenthal: F
It doesn’t take a genius to know that a pitcher who fails to get an out in multiple consecutive appearances isn’t playing very well. Up until relatively recently, Rosenthal had an infinite ERA. He’s since gotten it down to a more healthy 36.00, but it’s looking like signing Rosenthal coming off of a Tommy John surgery that left him sidelined for a year was a bad idea.
Tony Sipp: D
Likewise, Tony Sipp has not been stellar so far this season. He currently has an ERA above 5.00 and while his performance has been better than Rosenthal’s, it still leaves much to be desired after he came off a stellar year with the Astros last season. However, Sipp was not expected to be a major piece of the bullpen, so that somewhat mitigates his lackluster play so far.
Kyle Barraclough: F
Again, what looked to be a good offseason addition to the relief corps blew up in the Nationals’ face. Barraclough has been awful with an ERA of 6.39, unacceptable for someone who was supposed to be a 7th or 8th inning guy. Barraclough struggles greatly with control and walks 4.3 batters per 9 innings. Additionally, he gives up 2.5 home runs per 9 innings, meaning that he will essentially give up a home run every three to four innings he pitches. Barraclough was expected to be a huge piece of this year’s bullpen who could lock up one of the later innings, but so far he has been very disappointing.
Tanner Rainey: B+
Ending this article on a positive note, Tanner Rainey, with the exception of Sean Doolittle, has been one of the few bright spots of the bullpen. Rainey came over from the Reds in the Tanner Roark trade, and while he pitched terribly for the Reds last season, albeit in only 8 innings, he’s been nothing short of spectacular for the Nationals so far. His ERA is one of the bullpen’s lowest at 2.19 and he has solid peripheral stats, as well. All-in-all, a great pick up for the Nationals.