Nationals release Chris Young

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Chris Young told the Nationals he planned to opt out of his minor-league contract if they didn’t add him to the MLB roster and today the two sides officially parted ways, as Washington released the veteran right-hander.

Washington has one of the best, deepest rotations in baseball, so it was never a particularly great fit for a 34-year-old starter trying to win a job during spring training. He should be able to help quite a few other teams as a back-of-the-rotation addition, although given his injury history and mid-80s velocity it may be on another minor-league contract.

Young started 20 games for the Mets last season, throwing 115 innings with a 4.15 ERA and 80/36 K/BB ratio.

Roberto Osuna to be the Astros new closer

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When the Astros acquired suspended reliever Roberto Osuna it was viewed as a low-price move to bolster their bullpen. Now, it turns out, it was a move to get a closer. Manager A.J. Hinch said as much today, anyway, telling MLB Network Radio that Osuna is going to get most of Houston’s save chances going forward.

This comes the morning after a late innings loss to the Mariners. The closer who Osuna is going to take over for — Hector Rondon — didn’t even pitch in that game, with the damage coming on a three-run Robinson Cano homer off of Collin McHugh. Rondon has blown saves in two of his last three appearances, however, coughing up runs against the Mariners at home on August 12 and against the A’s this past Friday.

Osuna has made five appearances since joining the Astros, allowing one run, striking out three and walking one in five innings of work. Before that he saved nine games for the Blue Jays prior to his domestic violence suspension.