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Sean Doolittle concerned about workload

Baseball game between Washington Nationals and the Cincinnati Reds

WASHINGTON, DC - AUGUST 12: Washington Nationals relief pitcher Sean Doolittle (63) gave up a home run in the ninth inning to Cincinnati Reds right fielder Phillip Ervin (6) but held on as the Nats beat the Reds 7-6 at Nationals Park August 12, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Katherine Frey/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

The Washington Post/Getty Images

With one more inning of work, Nationals reliever Sean Doolittle is set to reach his highest innings total since 2014. Currently at 50 2/3 innings, the lefty has saved 27 games with a 3.73 ERA and 58 strikeouts against 12 walks. He has struggled recently, however, giving up eight runs on 12 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts over his last 7 2/3 innings of work dating back to July 29.

Appearing on 106.7 The Fan’s Grant & Danny Show today, Doolittle said his workload concerns him. The lefty said, “I haven’t really amassed this kind of bulk in several years. There’s nights like last night where you feel a little bit out of wack, a little bit sluggish. It catches up to you after a while.” Last night, Doolittle allowed two runs to the Reds while still converting the save.

Doolittle’s skid is creating yet more bullpen-related anxiety for the Nationals as the bullpen has been a cause of worry all year. It’s been such a concern that the club has picked up veteran retreads Fernando Rodney, Hunter Strickland, and Greg Holland midseason.

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