WASHINGTON – Ace Max Scherzer was replaced, left-wing Patrick Corbin struggled, and prospect Cade Cavalli advanced from Single-A to Triple-A.
In addition, the relief Kyle Finnegan was named the team’s pitcher of the year by local media despite several blown saves while friend Paolo Espino may have been the most effective starting position for Washington citizens.
These are some of the pitchers that Nats fans have heard a lot about last season.
Not much was said about Cole Henry – but that may change as the team builds for the future.
Henry, 22, a second round pick out LSU in 2020 by the Nationals, made an impressive WHIP of 0.85 with an ERA of 2.30 in 47 innings spread over two teams in the minor league system in 2021.
“Cole ended the year healthy, strong and turned heads with his improved command of fastball and action on the curveball,” assistant general manager Mark Scialabba wrote to Federal Baseball last weekend.
In nine games, eight of them started, too high Single-A Wilmington, he was 3-3 with an ERA of 1.88 and an impressive WHIP of 0.79, and he started two starts in the Florida Complex League after dealing with an elbow problem, puts out a 6.75 ERA over just four rounds.
He had 70 strikeouts and only 12 trips in total in the 47 innings last year.
Henry is one of the biggest prospects in the Washington system, according to Baseball America and MiLB.com.
“His change continued to show plus late washing and display of tunnels well outside his fastball with two stitches. He competed well down the stretch and we’re excited to see him expand the gains he made late in the season. The Arizona Fall League will be a great opportunity for Cole to get valuable innings he needs against the best prospects in the match, says Scialabba.
Henry was named Surprise Saguaros’ list of the Arizona Fall League earlier this month.