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Relievers who the Washington Nationals Should Target to Improve Their Bullpen

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The Washington Nationals are currently 28-33 and 6.5 games behind the Philadelphia Phillies for first place in the NL East. Washington has won nine of it’s last 11 as their offense is finally healthy and producing. However the bullpen is still a work in progress. During Sunday’s game, the bullpen blew a three run lead in the eighth and it took a walk off bomb by Trea Turner for the Nats to win. Even closer Sean Doolittle was shaky in that game as he gave up two hits in the ninth before getting out of the jam. Washington’s bullpen has the worst ERA in the league at 6.68.

Here are a few relievers Washington should trade for to help bridge the gap to Sean Dootlittle.

Will Smith, San Francisco Giants

Washington
Image courtesy of Twitter.

The 29-year-old is having the best year of his career with the Giants. In 22.2/3 innings this year, Smith has a 2.32 ERA, with 32 strikeouts and is 13/13 in save opportunities. He is setting career highs in ERA, K/9 at 12.71, K/BB at 8.00, opponents batting average at .154, and opponents OPS at .464.

Before 2018 Smith was primary used in the eighth inning and that’s where he would be slotted in the Nats bullpen. Washington has allowed 60 runs in 61 eighth innings and drastically need someone to bridge the gap to Doolittle. Smith would be that guy.

Alex Colome, Chicago White Sox

Washington
Image courtesy of ESPN

Despite giving up a walk off home run to Trea Turner on Sunday, Colome is having a solid season. In 23.2/3 innings this year, Colome has a 2.28 ERA, with 22 strikeouts and is 12/12 in save opportunities. He has only given up six runs this season with two of them coming Sunday.  While his overall numbers are down, he is on pace to set a career high in opponents average and OPS with .188 and .509 respectively.

Similar to Smith, Colome would be used in the eighth inning to help put an end to the teams late inning struggles. While he has primarily been a closer, Colome was used for the eighth inning last season when he played for Seattle.

Feature Image From The Washington Post.

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