Prized Pitcher In Juan Soto Trade Return "Ready To Go"

The Washington Nationals tore it down last season with the blockbuster trade that sent generational talent Juan Soto to the San Diego Padres for a massive prospect package. 

The prized return in that deal might very well be one of the game's top young pitching prospects for the past few years now, power-lefty Mackenzie Gore. Unfortunately, he came to the team while rehabbing an elbow injury, so he wasn't able to pitch for the Nats in 2022. 

Manager Dave Martinez, though, says he now "ready to go" and is hyped for the youngster.

"We got him last year, we rehabbed him, he felt good enough to pitch, but we didn't want to put him out there in September. We just kinda wanted to hold him off, and now he's ready to go. So I'm excited to get him started, get him cranking.

"Hey, he's got a four-pitch mix, he throws the ball really hard, but his slider and changeup (also) really play. So we're excited to get him out there and watch him compete."

Gore came up to the Padres for his major league debut last season and looked dominant through his first nine starts, pitching to a 1.50 ERA with a 4-1 record. Things kind of came undone a bit until injuries sidelined him for nearly two months. Sounds like he's ready to go this spring for the Nationals. 

Martinez also spoke highly of another of the top prospects they got in the Soto deal, infielder CJ Abrams. 

"He brings a lot of energy to our ballclub. He understands baseball very very well. We just gotta keep him grounded. He wants to do big things... He's exciting to watch, as we all know."

Exciting things are certainly in store for the young Nats this season.