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Sean Doolittle comes to fellow closer Daniel Hudson's defense

Sean Doolittle comes to fellow closer Daniel Hudson's defense

Get yourself a teammate like Sean Doolittle.

Due to the birth of his third child, Washington Nationals' co-closer Daniel Hudson missed Game 1 of the NLCS. Hudson found himself at the center of a national debate about whether or not he should have missed the game.

Doolittle had none of that.

After the Nationals' 3-1 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 2 of the NLCS, Doolittle responded to the criticism directed at his teammate.

“If your reaction to someone having a baby is anything other than, ‘Congratulations, I hope everybody’s healthy,’ you’re an [expletive],” Doolittle said.

In the face of criticism, Hudson prevailed with a strong-but-short performance in Game 2.

Just one day after his wife gave birth, Hudson came in to record the final two outs of the game. It took him only five pitches to get Paul Goldschmidt and Marcell Ozuna out and earn the save.

Whether it's because of the co-closer system or the Nats' tight-knit locker room, all we know is that Doolittle has Hudson's back. Everybody could use a friend like that.

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Sean Doolittle speaks out against disbanding of several minor league affiliates

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Sean Doolittle speaks out against disbanding of several minor league affiliates

When Sean Doolittle speaks, it's usually a pretty good idea to listen.

The latest piece of news the Nationals' closer has weighed in on? The proposed changes to baseball's minor league system, in which several teams may lose their affiliations and 1,000 players -- not to mention countless local employees -- would lose their jobs.

Doolittle is responding to reports of incoming changes that would drastically alter the shape and, more importantly, scope of minor league baseball. 

In an era with rapidly-declining attendance and fan interest every year, it's confusing to Doolittle and others why Major League Baseball would take actions to limit exposure to thousands of fans.

Doolittle points out in his thread of tweets why this seems counter-intuitive to what baseball is trying to do in winning over young fans. At the end of the day, the decision comes down to money, which will ultimately hurt fans in more remote areas of the country.

The Nationals and Orioles would be impacted too. The Frederick Keys, Baltimore's Single-A affiliate, is on the chopping block despite some of the best attendance numbers and community efforts in their league. The Hagerstown Suns, the Nats' Single-A affiliate, are also potential victims.

Once again, baseball is having the wrong conversations when it comes to improving the sport. Hopefully cooler heads like Doolittle's prevail and local teams across the country can continue to operate, bringing baseball to new fans everywhere.

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Former Nationals first baseman Adam Dunn on MLB's 2020 Hall of Fame ballot

Former Nationals first baseman Adam Dunn on MLB's 2020 Hall of Fame ballot

The National Baseball Hall of Fame announced on Monday the 32 names that are on the 2020 ballot, and one former Nationals player was listed.

That would be first baseman Adam Dunn, who played for Washington for two seasons, 2009 and 2010. 

In his two seasons in the nation's capital, Dunn displayed the power that had only been seen by Alfonso Soriano before in a Nationals uniform. Dunn hit exactly 38 home runs in both seasons, topping 100 RBIs during both campaigns, too.

Of course, should Dunn be selected into the Hall of Fame, the Nationals would not be his primary team. The slugger spent the first eight seasons of his MLB career with the Cincinnati Reds, and spent three and a half seasons with the Chicago White Sox following his time in D.C.

2020 is Dunn's first year on the ballot. While he had a long, respectable career, it's unlikely he's voted in right away, if at all.

The Nationals still don't have a primary member in the Hall of Fame, as catcher Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez is currently the only player in the Hall that sported a Curly W since the team relocated to Washington from Montreal in 2005.

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