The Nationals added lefty Tim Collins to the big league roster on Monday to step into the void left by Ryan Madson’s trip to the DL, but Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post writes that another Triple-A arm, veteran Justin Miller, could also emerge as an option in D.C. The former Rockies setup man has impressed to open the season, pitching 12 2/3 shutout innings with a 21-to-3 K/BB ratio and a 44.4 percent grounder rate. Miller’s minor league deal with the Nats has a June 15 opt-out provision, according to Janes, so the Nationals will need to make a call on him in the coming weeks. The 30-year-old Miller showed swing-and-miss stuff with the Rox in 2015-16 but struggled to strand runners and was plagued in 2016 by sub-par control and some home run troubles.
Here’s more from the eastern divisions …
- Orioles reliever Zach Britton is scheduled to start a rehab assignment at Triple-A Norfolk at the end of the month, Steve Melewski of MASNsports.com tweets. Presumably, the club will give Britton a fair bit of time not only to test his surgically repaired Achilles, but also to get his arm into shape, given that he did not participate in Spring Training. But it could be that Britton will be ready for the majors by the middle of June or so — plenty of time for him to build up trade value in advance of the deadline. Of course, the veteran southpaw still not only has to show that he can pitch without physical limitation, but also that he can bounce back from a subpar 2017 season in which he managed a 2.89 ERA over 37 1/3 innings but was nowhere near as dominant as he had been in prior campaigns.
- Phillies outfielder Roman Quinn is slated for a six-to-eight week DL stint after surgery to repair a torn finger ligament, as Matt Gelb of The Athletic was among those to tweet. This is the latest malady to slow the 25-year-old, who has yet to appear in a hundred or more games in a single professional season. He reached the majors briefly in 2016, showing an interesting blend of patience and speed, but has logged just 294 Triple-A plate appearances since. Quinn was off to a nice start to the current season, slashing .289/.340/.444 and swiping a dozen bags in just 97 plate appearances. He might well have been the first man up had a need arisen at the MLB level. With Aaron Altherr and Nick Williams carrying below-average batting lines, it’s conceivable a chance might have come in the near future. Now, though, Quinn will need to get back to health yet again before waiting for another opportunity.