During the first inning of last night’s Nationals-Giants game starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez and right fielder Jayson Werth had a verbal altercation in the Washington dugout that was caught on camera. It didn’t go beyond yelling because Werth seemed to end things by walking away.
Chase Hughes of CSNWashington.com went looking for answers in the clubhouse afterward and both parties declined to talk, but manager Davey Johnson explained:
Oh, just a little camaraderie going on. Jayson sometimes can get a little vocal. He thought that Gio was a little late covering first, and he was. Spirits are high. I like it. It’s no big deal.
Gonzalez did admit afterward that he was late covering first base, saying he fell off the mound to the third base side and thought the first baseman or second baseman was going to make the play.
Veteran right-hander Bartolo Colon was released from his minor league deal with the Rangers on Saturday, MLB.com’s TR Sullivan reports. Despite his strong showing in spring training, Colon wasn’t considered a lock to make the Opening Day rotation. This may not be the end of his time with the team, however — according to multiple reports, the Rangers have expressed their desire to restructure a minor league deal with the right-hander and could work out an arrangement to keep him on as bullpen and Triple-A depth this season.
Colon, 44, is preparing for his 21st year in the majors. He split his 2017 campaign with the Braves and Twins, posting a cumulative 7-14 record in 28 starts and finishing the season with a 6.48 ERA, 2.2 BB/9 and 5.6 SO/9 in 143 innings. While those numbers were some of the worst he’d seen since 2009, the veteran righty made a compelling case in camp this spring, holding batters to six earned runs, four home runs, two walks and 10 strikeouts in 18 innings.
The Rangers are expected to open the season with a rotation comprised of Cole Hamels, Doug Fister, Matt Moore, Mike Minor and Martin Perez. Perez is working his way back from an elbow injury in his non-throwing arm and is slated to miss his first start of the season, which would provide a brief window of opportunity for Colon when the Rangers hit the road in April.