The Nationals Should Steal This Upcoming Free Agent Away From the Braves After the 2020 Season

By michael obermuller
Shane Greene is the reliever Washington Nationals fans have needed for years.
Shane Greene is the reliever Washington Nationals fans have needed for years. / Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The Atlanta Braves have now won two straight NL East titles, but the Washington Nationals got the last laugh in 2019 after blazing through the postseason to win the World Series. Even with the recent championship under their belts, the Nats would like to reclaim their dominance in the East, which was prevalent in 2016 and '17.

The Nationals' greatest weakness in recent seasons has been bullpen. Their team ERA for relief pitchers was actually the second-worst mark in baseball in 2019 according to FanGraphs, at 5.68. Washington basically won in spite of its relievers last year, riding the starting rotation all the way throughout the Nationals' postseason run.

The franchise seems to understand that this must change if they want to win again, as they already made moves to sign Will Harris and Fernando Abad (while also re-signing Daniel Hudson) during the offseason. They should keep that trend alive and steal away Shane Greene from the rival Braves in 2021.

Greene is an underrated reliever who has been consistent and versatile in recent years with the Detroit Tigers and Braves. As a pitcher who can close or come on in for high-leverage situations, Greene has made himself valuable with his strikeouts per nine innings sitting better than 9.00 in his last three seasons. In 2019, he had a left on base percentage of 80.3 and a 2.30 combined ERA.

The current closer job in Washington is pretty much up for grabs when the 2020 season does return. Daniel Hudson took the job from Sean Doolittle down the stretch in 2019, but Harris could also assume control if he pitches well.

One thing is for certain, the Nats need reliable arms in the bullpen, and Shane Greene is just that. Turning 32 this November, he should still have a few good years left, and Greene should definitely be on Washington's radar.

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Michael Obermuller is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Michael Obermuller also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username king_mizzard. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.