Nationals DFA Shawn Kelley

The Washington Nationals designated relief pitcher Shawn Kelley for assignment following a “tantrum” he threw during the Nats’ 25-4 rout of the New York Mets on Tuesday.

Kelley, 34, slammed his glove on the ground after he let up a home run in the ninth inning to Austin Jackson.

Kelley is a 10-year pro, spending time with the Seattle Mariners and New York Yankees before having a breakout season in 2015 with the San Diego Padres and signing with the Nationals before the 2016 season, where he has played since then.

He had a good year in 2016 for the Nats, pitching to a 2.64 ERA in 58 innings and earning a 1.5 WAR out of the bullpen.

He couldn’t follow that performance up in 2017, pitching just 26.0 innings with an ERA over seven.

In 2018, though, Kelley seemed to be having a bit of a resurgence. He had a 3.34 ERA and a 0.959 WHIP in 32.1 IP. He has a career-best 1.4 BB/9 this year, but home runs remain an issue.

The Nationals designated him for assignment Wednesday morning, but it seems like this is about more than the glove slam. I think the Nationals just didn’t want Kelley anymore, couldn’t find a trade partner for him, and gave him the DFA today when they finally had the excuse, despite this year’s production.


Featured Image via Wikimedia Commons

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