Remember Joe Beimel? Number 97 on his jersey, the long hair, and perhaps the first great beard in Nationals history?
The 35-year-old relief pitcher spent half of a season with the Nats, back in 2009, before being traded for Ryan Mattheus. The lefty had a so-so stint in Washington and now, according to Yahoo! Sports, there may be a reason for it.
Tim Brown of Yahoo! has reported Beimel underwent Tommy John surgery earlier this month to repair a torn ligament in his elbow. Apparently Beimel had been pitching with the tear for 3-4 years. That means Beimels elbow was hurting when he made 45 appearances for Washington.
The reliever has yet to pitch this season after being cut by the Rangers a week before Opening Day. He struggled with a 5.33 ERA last season in 35 games with Pittsburgh.
The Nats got Mattheus in return which in hindsight was a pretty good move. Mattheus has posted a 2.60 ERA in 54 total games with the Nats since being called up in June of 2011. This is all after, however, Mattheus needed Tommy John surgery himself. Mattheus actually had the surgery the same month he was traded to Washington, in July of 2009.
Beimel says he will try and continue his career next season, but with his age and a recovery time of 12-18 months it wont be easy. He is left-handed though and has an overall good resume. Hopefully next time he can try out with a healthy arm.
Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez became the first former Nationals player (2005-present) to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame on Wednesday. He was inducted in his first year of eligibility, marking the 52nd first-ballot hall of famer in history.
Rodriguez, who was the first free agent signed by current Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo, played the final two seasons of his career with Washington in 2010-11. During his time in D.C. he hit .254 six homers and 68 RBI. Pudge's greatest contribution to the Nationals came from his leadership and work ethic. He guided Stephen Strasburg through his rookie season and also helped develop Wilson Ramos so he could pass the torch to him.
During his 21-year career, Pudge made 14 all-star teams, won 13 gold gloves, won seven silver slugger awards, led his league in caught-steeling percentage nine times, and was named American League MVP in 1999 with the Texas Rangers. He became a World Series champion in 2003 with the Florida Marlins. Pudge's 13 gold gloves are the most ever by a catcher, and his 2,844 career hits are the most ever by a player who appeared in 50 percent or more of their career games as a catcher.
In addition to Rodriguez, former Montreal Expos great Tim Raines was inducted to the Hall of Fame. Raines is the franchise leader (Expos/Nationals) in walks (793), runs (947), stolen bases (635) and triples (82). Raines was an all-star seven times and he won a silver slugger in 1986 with the Expos. He is the only player in MLB history with at least 100 triples, 150 homers and 600 RBI in a career, and the only player to steal at least 70 bases in six consecutive seasons.
Related: Bryce Harper wants Nationals to spend money on players, not team store
Bryce Harper isn't one to keep his opinions to himself. The Nationals slugger is outspoken about what he wants, whether that's to "Make Baseball Fun Again" or to make at least $400 million on his next contract.
On Wednesday, he gave his take on how the Nats should be investing their money this summer. Here's Harper responding to a tweet from ESPN's Jim Bowden.
Harper's message: Players over everything else. Sorry, gift shop.
It's plain to see where the 2015 NL MVP is going with this. Obviously, he wants as much talent around him as possible for a chance to win the World Series.
Matt Wieters, a four-time All-Star catcher, and Greg Holland, a two-time All-Star closer, could be significant additions to Washington's roster.
Harper is set to become a free agent in 2018, at which point an organization like the New York Yankees will be prepared to offer him both a massive salary and a massive investment in the players around him.
The slugger probably hopes his current team will try to surround him with winning pieces in an effort to keep him. But if a report about the Nationals' reaction to his contract demands proves accurate, they may have another agenda.
There's Harper drama around the Nationals? Just a regular Wednesday here in Washington.
MORE NATIONALS: Nationals avoid arbitration with Harper, three others