Washington Nationals: Yasmany Tomás heads to the capital a brand new man

The Washington Nationals decision to sign Yasmany Tomas may be surprising, but it could pay dividends for both sides.

Wednesday morning famed Cuban journalist Francys Romero reported that Yasmany Tomás had signed a minor league deal with the Washington Nationals that included an invitation to Spring Training.

Although surprising, the signing might pay dividends for the team from the nation’s capital and give a talented slugger the change of scenery and breath of fresh air he needed.

The Havana native will also play with the Santurce of Puerto Rican Winter League this off-season with the expectations of being ready to compete for a spot on the 26 man roster.

“My goal this winter is stay healthy and demonstrate my talent this winter. I also want to stay healthy and help Santurce win a league title,” said Tomás when I asked him about what his expectations for the winter were.

Last winter he played uninspired ball in the Dominican Republic with the Leonés of Escogido hitting .242 and driving in three runs.

When he signed with Arizona for $68 million over six years, he was expected to be a key power hitter for the club for years to come. This seemed to come to fruition in 2016 when he hit 31 homers, but injuries and falling out of favor banished him to a minor league purgatory in 2018, a place that was his permanent home until the end of this season.

Although he had magnificent Spring Trainings at the plate in 2018 and 2019 he was left off the Opening Day rosters and remanded to the minors. In 2020 he was also left out of the 60 man pool even though the designated hitter was to be used for the season. All these signs pointed to the Diamondbacks hierarchy not having any use for the slugger.

Tomás did make a brief cameo in the majors in 2019 but was sent back to the minor leagues after four games and six insignificant at bats. The slugger’s addition is insurance for Washington at worse if Ryan Zimmerman who opted out of last season decides to retire.

In four seasons on the grand stage with Arizona, Tomás hit .266 with 48 longballs and 163 runs batted in.