Roenis Elias, Paolo Espino, and Aaron Barrett have elected free agency. All three were outrighted by the Washington Nationals earlier this week, clearing waivers.
Barrett in particular holds a semi-significant role in organizational lore, as the 6’3″ right-hander came back Tommy John surgery only to suffer a horrendous arm injury while rehabbing in a simulated game. Barrett’s second injury has become an almost-boogeyman within the organization, as those present still talk about (as Dan Kolko does here) the sound of that second injury. Nevertheless, Barrett rehabbed a second time, returned to the big leagues in 2019, and won a ring.
The 32-year-old’s five big-league appearances over the last two seasons were largely symbolic, rewards for a high-character player whose tale of perseverance served as a point of pride for many within the organization. All of which is not to take away from his ability on the mound. Barrett was a successful cog in the bullpen from 2014 to 2015 before sustaining those arm injuries. Even after his return, he posted solid numbers in Double-A in 2019, posting a 2.75 ERA across 50 games.
Elías’ tenure in DC was also marked by injuries, but with a less uplifting finish. In a last minute deal, the Nats picked up Elías and Hunter Strickland from the Mariners at the deadline in 2019. He appeared in just 4 games after straining his hamstring. During a rare plate appearance, Elías initially strained his hamstring on an ill-advised sprint down the first base line while pitching in a game in Arizona. He missed the rest of the season, while a left flexor strain would keep him out of action in 2020. Prior to his injuries, Elías used his high-spin approach to save 14 games for the Mariners in 2019. He’ll be an interesting low-cost option for some team to take a flyer on this offseason.
The 33-year-old Espino made just two appearances for the Nats (one start) totaling 6 innings in 2020. It was the right-hander’s first big-league action since 2017 when he appeared for both the Brewers and Rangers.
Elias would be a nice swingman for the Phillies
Agreed. He will be a nice pick up for someone
Elias back to the M’s?
Peart of the game
Some minor league deals and foreign league deals are likely abound in the 2020-2021 offseason for those three guys.
Are we sure this article is right about Elias? Two days ago the Nats outrighted four players, but Elias was not one of them.
lists four players outrighted on 10/9/20: Barrett, Espino, Sanchez and Williams.
Furthermore, Elias is on the 60-day DL and they generally don’t restore 60-day guys until after FAs are declared post world-series….