This is the fifth time this category has appeared in the fourteen watchlists in this site’s history, but the first time it’s appeared in back-to-back years.
Let’s review how the 2023 Unit fared:
LHP Evan Lee
Lee threw 22⅓ ineffective innings for Harrisburg from April to June before going in the 7-Day I.L. for the rest of the season. He has not yet been released, but turns 27 in June.
RHP Jackson Tetreault
SSDL for Tetreault, who tossed 5⅔ innings for Wilmingtoon before going on the 60-day I.L. on July with a stress fracture in his right (throwing) scapula. After the 2023 season, the 27-y.o. (28 in June) Tetreault became a free agent.
RHP Cole Henry
RHP Gerardo Carrillo
Carrillo made two appearances in April and then spend the rest of the season on the I.L. He became a free agent this past November. As of this writing, the 25-y.o. Mexican-born northpaw is on the reserve list after making… wait for it… two appearances in the Mexican Winter League.
RHP Seth Shuman
In early March 2023, Shuman had UCL replacement surgery. He turned 26 in December, so if all went well he may actually return to Fredericksburg or Wilmington in the spring.
LHP Alfonso Hernández
We never did learn whether or Hernández developed Nats elbow or not. He was released in May 2023 and has not pitched elsewhere since the Venezuelan Winter League in 2022.
3B Brady House
He had an okay 2023.
LHP Cole Quintanilla
It’s unclear whether or if Quintanilla was injured in 2022. He retired at the end of Spring Training in 2023.
RHP Aldo Ramirez
Ramirez allegedly had Tommy John Surgery two years ago. He has not pitched since 2021. [eom]
OF Daylen Lile
Lile came back from Tommy John surgery sooner than expected and played two levels in 2023, finishing at High-A with an anemic .667 OPS in 40 games after posting .891 OPS in 66 games in the Carolina League, which earned him a spot on the postseason All-Star team.
And now for this year’s unit…
RHP Cade Cavalli
Cavalli (pictured above) went down in spring training after finishing 2023 on the I.L. After a breathless story or two about playing catch last fall, the CW is that Cavalli will be brought along slowly with a June target date for MLB…
RHP Cole Henry
…like this guy was in 2023. Henry made a pair of rehab starts for both Low-A and High-A, where he dominated, then 10 appearances (six starts) for AA, where he got lit like a Kennedy at an open bar. Unlike Cavalli, Henry is recovering from a procedure with a similar success rate to UCL but a much smaller sample size. That he was protected from the Rule 5 Draft isn’t necessarily an indication of his health…
RHP Zach Brzykcy
…as evidenced by Washington protecting this guy despite being about seven months removed from Tommy John surgery last April, which probably means he’s looking at a summer in West Palm Beach and maybe a tour through Low-A and High-A in August.
LHP Jake Bennett
Watching the Nationals deny that a pitcher is hurt is kind of like listening to a 20-something starlet claim her attraction to a rich, older man has nothing to do with his wealth. In a related story, Bennett went nearly two months between starts without going on the I.L., then made three very ineffective starts before undergoing Tommy John surgery in September.
RHP Brendan Collins
After a breakout 2022, Collins made one (1) appearance for the Blue Rocks before going on the I.L. for the rest of the season. While we’re unable to locate information that indicates he had had surgery, Occam’s Razor suggests his injury was, at the very least, quite severe.
LHP Pablo Aldonis
Aldonis made five apperances for the FredNats before going on the shelf. Like Collins, he never resurfaced in Florida in a game in which there was publicly available stats or appeared on the Tommy John tracker.