Aaron Barrett, a rookie short reliever from Central High School, has been optioned by the Washington Nationals to triple-A Syracuse as Blake Treinen, another righthanded reliever, was recalled from Syracuse.
“They need a long reliever to cover innings because our bullpen is taxed right now,” Barrett said Saturday. “I’ll be back up in 10 days or so. It’s just logistics. I have options, so it’s part of it. They can send me down and call me back up because this is my first year on the roster.”
In six appearances for Washington spanning 41/3 innings, Barrett allowed no runs and one hit while walking two and striking out six.
He gained the win in his first major league appearance against the New York Mets in the Nationals’ 9-7 opening-day victory on March 31. Barrett struck out two in a perfect inning.
Barrett, who made the leap from double-A Harrisburg last year to the majors this season, said he gained confidence when Nats manager Matt Williams used him in late-game situations.
“Whatever the role is, whether it’s a close game or the latter innings when we are down, my job is to go out there and get guys out,”Barrett said. “That’s all I can do.”
He played for Williams in the Arizona Fall League two years ago.
“For me, regardless of the results, (Barrett) doesn’t necessary see the third deck,” Williams told MLB.com. “It doesn’t matter to him. What matters to him is that he is throwing the ball where he wants to in the strike zone, and out of the strike zone when he wants to. So, in that regard, he has really been impressive. He doesn’t seem to be affected by the whole thing. He wants to ball a lot. So we have to put him in situations where that is going to happen sometimes. He is ready for it, which is good.”