Good news from David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, as Jair Jurrjens is scheduled to make his exhibition debut against the Yankees on Thursday.
Jurrjens gave Braves fans quite the scare upon arriving to camp last month after he experienced some soreness in his pitching shoulder. After an MRI revealed only mild inflammation, Jurrjens was sidelined for the first two weeks of camp, however as O’Brien points out, he has quickly progressed from long-tossing in the outfield to taking on the World Champions within the space of 11 days. Impressive. Jurrjens is scheduled to throw a live batting practice session on Tuesday in preparation for his Grapefruit League debut.
The 24-year-old right-hander was 14-10 with a 2.60 ERA and 1.21 WHIP over 34 starts last season, logging 215 innings. He’ll feature prominently in a rotation that figures to be a strength this season.
Tom Boswell of the Washington Post does frequent Q&As with readers and today he had quite the A to one of their Qs.
The question was about the Nats’ bullpen, which is obviously a glaring weakness on an otherwise excellent team. Following a long answer talking about the approach to bullpen construction, he dropped this:
On Friday, yet ANOTHER National simply walked up to me and said, “When the hell are they going to get this done? What are they waiting for? Waiting is just doing more damage.”
He didn’t even have to say what subject he was talking about or whom “they” were but it’s the bullpen and the Lerners.
A team has a problem when all a reporter has to do is say, “How’s it going?” and an established part of the team blasts the owners for not understanding what’s happening in their own dugout/clubhouse.
The Nats have a bit of a history venting to the Post’s reporters in ways a lot of players don’t vent, but that’s usually when things are going bad overall. These days, things are going pretty good for the Nats, the bum bullpen notwithstanding. I guess one weakness on an otherwise good team is annoying as hell.
But I guess now that they’re getting K-Rod, all of that will end.
The Nationals bullpen is a tire fire. They’re about to add another tire. Per Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, Washington is about to sign free agent reliever Francisco Rodriguez.
K-Rod was released by the Tigers last week after posting an ERA of 7.82 over 28 appearances this season. He has a 1.658 WHIP, is allowing 11.9 hits per nine innings and is posting his highest walk rate in five years. Also worth noting: the Detroit Friggin’ Tigers decided that he was not good enough to be in their bullpen.
So, yeah, good luck with that Washington.