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#pounditWednesday, September 30, 2020

Ryan Zimmerman, Joe Ross opt out of 2020 season

The Washington Nationals will be a bit shorthanded in 2020 as two players opted out of playing in the abbreviated season.

Third baseman Ryan Zimmerman and pitcher Joe Ross have both opted out of the 2020 season. Zimmerman issued a statement through his agency citing his three young children and his mother with multiple sclerosis as reasons for sitting out.

Zimmerman’s decision to sit out does not come as a huge shock, as he said he might in a recent interview. He clarified that he is not retiring, though he also did not guarantee his return for 2021. The longtime Nationals third baseman turns 36 in September and will be a free agent after the season, raising the possibility that he might not return to the game at all. It would mark an unfortunate and somewhat awkward end to the career of one of the Nationals’ most iconic players.

Ross was set to be Washington’s fifth starter this season. He posted a 5.48 ERA in 64 innings in 2018.

The Nationals will definitely miss these two as they look to repeat as World Series winners. Zimmerman is still a key figure on the team, while Ross’ exit means they’ll have to fill a rotation spot.

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