Nationals closer Rafael Soriano appeared to pitch his way out of the closer’s role last night against the Phillies, blowing a three-run lead in embarrassing fashion, which included allowing a home run to the punchless Ben Revere. Manager Matt Williams isn’t ready to make anything official yet.
CSN Washington’s Mark Zuckerman reports that Soriano will be given a couple days off in which he will work on his mechanics and throw a bullpen session before any further decisions are made. Williams didn’t name an interim closer in the meantime.
Soriano, 34, has allowed at least one run in three out of his last five appearances and has an 8.18 ERA in 12 appearances dating back to August 13. Overall, he has compiled a 3.04 ERA with 31 saves and a 55/18 K/BB ratio in 56 1/3 innings this season. The Nationals, who enter Saturday’s action with a seven-game lead in the NL East, have a $14 million club option on Soriano for the 2015 season that vests with 120 combined games finished between 2013-14. Currently, he is at 104.