How the Nationals helped Mitchell Parker develop into a big leaguer


The Washington Nationals need more Mitchell Parkers. Players the team discovered and drafted. Players who grew up in the organization and developed into potential big league contributors. Players who could make an instant impact.

That’s exactly what Parker, who is scheduled to start Thursday as the Nationals face the Texas Rangers, has done early in his MLB career. The left-hander boasts a 1.69 ERA and a 0.938 WHIP through three starts. He navigated a Los Angeles Dodgers lineup that features three former MVPs in his MLB debut, then carved up the Houston Astros before allowing one run against the Miami Marlins. All of that is encouraging to pitching coach Jim Hickey and the Nationals.

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