The Nationals have placed righty Aaron Barrett on outright waivers, Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post writes. Barrett would have been eligible for arbitration this offseason as a Super Two (and was projected to make a mere $700K), but the Nats have elected not to take him through that process.
The 28-year-old Barrett had Tommy John surgery late in the 2015 campaign. Late this season, while attempting a comeback from the injury, he fractured his elbow, requiring another surgery. Janes notes that Barrett is set to begin throwing again in a few weeks, but the Nationals’ decision to place him on outright waivers indicates that they’re not confident he’s likely to be a significant contributor next season. They might, however, be hoping to bring him back next season on a minor league deal.
Prior to Barrett’s recent run of bad luck, he was a key part of the Nationals’ bullpens in 2014 and 2015, pitching to a 3.47 ERA, 10.8 K/9 and 3.5 BB/9 in 70 innings over those two seasons. At his best, he boasted a mid-90s fastball and effective slider, although it’s unclear what his stuff might be like once he returns.