Ryan Zimmerman opts out of the 2020 season

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On Friday it was reported that Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman was considering opting out of the 2020 season. He has considered it. And yes, he is opting out. That’s the report from Britt Ghiroli of The Athletic. Zimmerman previously cited the facts that (a) he has a three-week-old baby at home; and (b) his mother has multiple sclerosis, which compromises a person’s immune system. In light of that it’s understandable that he has decided to err on the side of caution.

Per Major League Baseball’s health and safety guidelines, Zimmerman will forfeit his pay and service time for 2020, as only a high risk on the part of the player himself, as opposed to family members, triggers the pay/service time protections built in to the agreement between MLB and the MLBPA.

Zimmerman re-signed with the Nationals on a one-year, $2 million contract over the offseason after being limited to just 52 games due to injury last year. It was thought that if he could not re-sign with Washington that he’d prefer to retire. In light of his opting-out of the 2020 season, it’s very possible that Zimmerman’s big league career is now, effectively, over.

UPDATE: Zimmerman is saying he is NOT retiring:

Nationals’ Strasburg ejected for arguing from the stands

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
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NEW YORK — A pitcher getting ejected for arguing balls and strikes – on his day off? And, from the stands?

Nationals star Stephen Strasburg earned one of baseball’s most unique ejections – probably ever – in the third inning of Washington’s game against the New York Mets on Thursday.

Strasburg was sitting in Section 121 at Citi Field in this socially distant season because he’s scheduled to start Friday against Baltimore Orioles. He was apparently unhappy with the strike zone of plate umpire Carlos Torres after Austin Voth‘s 2-2 pitch to Pete Alonso on the outside corner was ruled a ball.

Moments later, Torres ejected last year’s World Series MVP, though it took a few seconds to realize who had been tossed.

Someone was heard yelling: “You’re (expletive) brutal” shortly before television cameras captured Strasburg doffing his cap as he walked up the staircase on his way out of the park.

“Sorry, folks – sorry, FCC,” Mets broadcaster Gary Cohen said on SNY.

The usually stoic Strasburg appeared to be grinning underneath his blue mask as he made his exit.