The Nats have generally been active at this time, making trades during four of the last five meetings.
One of those trades allowed them to acquire one of the integral parts of their October run, Adam Eaton, in exchange for a trio of promising pitching prospects.
As the Nationals slumped early on, the trade came under a lot of scrutiny.
Though Eaton was hardly lighting it up with an OPS of just .696 on May 21st, the main reason that the deal was under the microscope was the success of a player that went the other direction.
One season after posting the highest qualified ERA among starters, Lucas Giolito was performing like a budding ace to start the 2019 season.
The right-hander had a 3.15 ERA in 17 first-half starts, with an impressive 10.8 K/9 and 3.42 BB/9 to boot. His performances netted him a well-earned All-Star nod for the American League as he finally seemed to be living up to the potential he flashed in the Nats’ system.
In late-May, he would’ve slotted into the Nationals’…