After four seasons with the San Francisco Giants, right-hander Yusmeiro Petit will be calling Washington D.C., home next season, a decision he explains via the Washington Post.
Despite four successful seasons as a spot starter and long reliever with the Giants, Petit was non-tendered by San Francisco this off-season and made a free agent. After he received interest from a variety of teams, the 31-year-old Venezuelan pitcher opted to join the Washington Nationals with a one-year deal that contains a team option for 2017.
He elaborated as to why he chose the Nationals in specific.
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"They're a team always in contention, and hopefully, we'll be in the mix again this year," Petit said, per the Post. "We'll have a good bullpen, a competitive one. … I picked the Nationals because they're a competitive team like San Francisco. The past few years, in San Francisco, we've had really good success every other year. Washington has good pitching and hopefully I can help them do something good, like reaching the World Series."
In his four years with the Giants, Petit held a 10-9 record with a 3.66 ERA and 240 strikeouts versus 52 walks in 245 2/3 innings. Twenty-nine of his 90 outings with San Francisco were starts.
"It's not easy to keep your arm ready for any situation," he said. "Long toss is really important. Doesn't matter if you throw that day, you do it. That's one of the things that has worked so well for me the past few years in helping me do a good job. Be ready for any situation. But sometimes I may go 10 days without throwing. So to keep my arm in shape, I throw a light bullpen every two, three days to maintain the strike zone."
Nationals fans best remember Petit for his stellar performance in Game 2 of the 2014 NLDS, in which he threw six innings of one-hit relief to help lead the Giants to victory over the Nats.
"Now that I'm with the Nationals, hopefully fans see that I can help them like I did San Francisco," Petit said. "Hopefully, I can help them in the playoffs, too, and we can win a championship with Washington."