After a solid 2012 campaign for the Washington Nationals, 2013 was supposed to be the breakout year for Ross Detwiler. Unfortunately, injuries have essentially wasted this season, but manager Davey Johnson told reporters that there is a chance that Detwiler could make an appearance out of the bullpen before the season is over.
Detwiler has completed a couple of bullpen sessions and the left-hander himself said that he’s been feeling better and throwing the ball much better than before.
In 2012, Detwiler had a solid year in his first season as a Nationals full-time starter. While he wasn’t ace material, he was still a great fourth or fifth pitcher in the rotation. He went 10-8 with a 3.40 ERA and 105 strikeouts to just 52 walks. His most notable start came in the playoffs when he pitched six one-run, three-hit innings in the Nationals’ 2-1 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals behind Jayson Werth‘s Game 4 walk-off home run.
The Nationals shouldn’t give up on Detwiler for next year. He has been battling injuries all season long and hasn’t been able to get into a rhythm on the mound. Just when things started to get back to normal, another injury popped up.
In the offseason, he is expected to pitch in winter leagues to make up for the innings that he missed this season. That will give him a chance to regain some sort of normalcy as a pitcher and give him some confidence as well.
If Detwiler can return from this injury at 100 percent, the Nationals will have four of the five starting pitching spots locked up in 2014 with four good pitchers filling those roles. All they’ll have to do is find a fifth quality starter, which shouldn’t be hard given the guys in their minor league system, and they can return to the dominant pitching staff that they had in 2012.