VIERA, Fla. — Chris Young walked into the Washington Nationals’ clubhouse Sunday morning, put on his uniform and made his intentions for the immediate future clear: he will pitch for the Nationals tomorrow night in Kissimmee against the Houston Astros.
What he will do, and which organization he will do it with, after that, however, is still undecided.
Young can opt-out of his minor league contract with the Nationals by Monday if the team does not put him on the 25-man roster. Given that they have no room in their rotation at this moment for him, that is not likely to happen. If and when he does opt-out, it will take 24 hours for it to go into effect.
That means Young will have a decision to make: go to Triple-A for the Nationals and be their much-needed security blanket for injury in the big league rotation, or try to find a major league job elsewhere.
To that end, Young said “There is interest, yeah, absolutely,” but declined to discuss specifics and said he’s allowing his agent to handle things.
“I’m just trying to decide what’s the best fit in a lot of ways,” Young said. “There’s so many considerations, I can’t get into every hypothetical. Once I have all the information, I’ll evaluate it.”
The Nationals have been pleased with Young’s progression this spring and they view him as their top choice, should he remain with the organization, to take over if one of their starting pitchers were to suffer an injury.
“He’d be the guy,” manager Davey Johnson said.
Young, too, has spoken glowingly about his experience with the Nationals.
“They’ve been unbelievable,” he said. “It’s just a first-class organization top to bottom. There’s not a bad thing I can say about this place. They’ve done it right.”
That said, Young has made it fairly clear he would prefer a major league job. Asked if he’d stay with the Nationals simply because they’re contenders, Young summed up his thoughts succinctly.
“Syracuse doesn’t play in the World Series,” he said.