Remember Wilmer Flores last year? That was almost me as tears welled in my eyes. We’d heard that the Nationals had traded for pitcher Mark Melancon. As usual, I was tuning out the sports announcers that tended to drone on and provide little detail. However, these names stood out in the story: Felipe Rivero, Jose Lobaton, and Taylor Hearn. Wait – did they just say Jose Lobaton?
Questions immediate flooded my brain. Who would Gio Gonzalez’ personal catcher be now? Most importantly, who would remove the Nationals’ helmets when they returned to the dugout after hitting a home run? Lobaton was the best helmet snatcher in the business.
Jose Lobaton is one of my favorite Washington Nationals, although he doesn’t get much playing time serving as back-up catcher to Wilson Ramos. But Pedro Severino had caught on Saturday – did this mean it was true? (Queue melodramatic music and declare, “Say it ain’t so!”)
Yesterday, I took a peak at the Nationals’ roster on my MLB app. No, Lobaton was not there anymore. Wait a minute. What if I click on “40-Man Roster”? And there he was, still listed in the “L’s”.
So what went so terribly wrong? Apparently, whatever show I was half-listening to had reported that there had, indeed, been a trade. The Washington Nationals acquired Melancon from Pittsburgh. In turn, the Nationals sent Felipe Rivero and Taylor Hearn to the Pirates. Naturally, as reporters do, they then started babbling about Rivero’s record with the Nats since the 2014 trade that brought him and catcher Jose Lobaton to D.C. They also may have been discussing Severino being called up after Lobaton had been placed on the DL with tendinitis. Like I said, I really wasn’t listening.
So, I should pay more attention in the future. Especially as the trade deadline nears.
Happy Trade Deadline Day!