Three Nationals pitchers were confirmed today as having not participated in summer training yet, joining a group of five position players who have not yet been seen by reporters on the field through the first four workouts at Nationals Park.
Pitchers Wander Suero, Roenis Elías and Joan Adon have not been cleared to join the rest of the club for summer training at Nationals Park, Davey Martinez acknowledged today, though the manager added each has tested negative for COVID-19.
Suero and Adon are from the Dominican Republic and are believed to have traveled to Washington with teammates Juan Soto, Victor Robles, Starlin Castro and Luis Garcia, along with possibly others from Latin America. Elías, who was born in Cuba but now resides in Austin, Texas, and veteran infielder Howie Kendrick, who lives in Arizona in the offseason, also have not participated in workouts yet.
The Nationals have confirmed two of the 59 players invited to their summer camp tested positive for COVID-19 during intake screening. Any players or staff members who came into contact with either of those two players, though, are also required to be re-tested and can’t report to the ballpark until those follow-up tests are confirmed negative for the virus.
“We’re quarantining them right now,” Martinez said today when asked about Suero, Elías and Adon. “But we’re working diligently to get those guys back as soon as possible.”
Major League Baseball clubs are not permitted to reveal the names of players who test positive without their consent.
The absences of four prominent position players - Soto, Robles, Kendrick and Castro - in particular have been noticeable through the first four days of workouts. With full-squad drills having now begun, reserves Michael A. Taylor, Andrew Stevenson and Wilmer Difo have been working alongside regulars Adam Eaton, Carter Kieboom, Trea Turner, Asdrúbal Cabrera, Eric Thames, Kurt Suzuki and Yan Gomes.
Though hopeful the absent players will be able to join them on the field soon, Martinez wants the others to prepare as though they may be needed to open the season, which is scheduled to begin in 15 days.
“The guys that are here are going to get plenty of work in, just in case something happens in the future,” the manager said. “But we expect (the delayed players) to come ready to jump in and do what they need to do to get ready.
“I know it’s a short period of time. A lot of these guys have actually done some extensive workouts back at their homes. We know where they’re at. We know what they feel like. So it’s basically trying to get them in there and get them at-bats as soon as we possibly can.”