WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Pedro Severino was in the Washington Nationals’ clubhouse Saturday morning, milling around with a smile as he usually does and listening to music as most of his teammates packed to head north.
But Severino wasn’t throwing his belongings into a cardboard box. That was because, as was announced Saturday afternoon, the 25-year-old catcher now plays for the Baltimore Orioles. The Orioles claimed Severino off outright waivers, ending his time with the only organization for which he has played.
Washington signed Severino as a 16-year-old out of the Dominican Republic in 2010. He made his big league debut and played two games in 2015 before bouncing between the majors and minors for the next three seasons. He was out of minor league options entering the 2019 season, and the Nationals now have an open spot on their 40-man roster.
Since there was no room for him on the 25-man roster once the Nationals added Yan Gomes and Kurt Suzuki this offseason, Severino seemed to be a lock to hit the waiver wire before the season began. He joins a rebuilding Orioles team that should offer him plenty of opportunity. Severino got a chance with Washington in 2018 when Matt Wieters was lost to an early-season injury; he hit .171 in 63 games (53 starts) from April 2 to July 8. When Wieters came off the injured list, the Nationals kept Spencer Kieboom and sent Severino to Class AAA Syracuse.
He returned as a September call-up and appeared in seven more games but was no longer part of the organization’s plans. Gomes, Suzuki, Kieboom and Raudy Read are now the catchers on the 40-man roster. Severino has just over a year of major league service time, giving the Orioles five more years of team control.
Read more on the Nationals: