Nationals Veteran Reliever Won't Be Ready For Opening Day

Left-handed reliever Sean Doolittle of the Washington Nationals is unlikely to be ready for Opening Day, according to Mark Zuckerman of

Doolittle underwent surgery in July 2022 to address a partially torn UCL in his left elbow and has not experienced any physical setbacks in his recovery. However, the Nationals have decided to slow down his rehab program to avoid any potential setbacks.

Doolittle, who had hoped to make the Opening Day roster, remains focused on returning to full health. "Obviously making the Opening Day roster was a goal. But the biggest goal is getting back healthy, and you can't put a timeline on that at this point," he said in a statement. "Let's be smart about it."

The 36-year-old southpaw is expected to contribute for the Nationals at some point during the season.

Over the last four seasons, Doolittle has compiled a 4.18 ERA, 1.35 WHIP, with 131 strikeouts across 122.2 innings of work. He's made 136 relief appearances in that span, finishing 71 games and converting 30 saves. Photo Credit:  Rhona Wise-USA TODAY Sports