Right-hander Brent Honeywell won’t be making his major-league debut any time soon.
The Rays prospect underwent successful Tommy John surgery and will be out the entire 2018 season.
Ramos suddenly becomes arguably the best backup catcher in the league. He can mash the ball and should be a fun bat off the bench if the manager doesn’t mind pinch-hitting with his second backstop. Arroyo can theoretically play a bit of shortstop, as well as back up at second and third. Ideally, he’d be getting everyday plate appearances somewhere, but, well, desperate times and all that. Dietrich can be a bit of a super-sub at all four corner spots. Smith provides blistering speed off the bench, and the ability to play all three outfield positions. He’s an excellent pinch-runner or late-inning defensive replacement. And sure, he can make a lot of contact, but just don’t expect him to do much with it, as he has almost no power whatsoever.
“I think it’s the understanding of when … the training staff lets me go and it’s time to play, you only want to come off the DL once,” Murphy told reporters Tuesday, via ESPN. “I don’t want to start playing games and then have to stop.”
Murphy — who batted .322 in 2017, good for second in the National League — underwent debridement and microfracture surgery on his right knee in mid-October and has been rehabbing since. He has yet to run at full speed and is currently not allowed to swing a bat.
New Washington manager Dave Martinez is not looking to hinder his star second baseman’s progress by putting him the lineup too early.
“I’m more concerned about rushing him and him not being fully ready,” Martinez said. “When we get him back, we don’t want him to go back on the DL, we want to get him back for the whole season.”
Murphy, 32, would not commit to being ready on opening day, but he is satisfied with his progress.