With many teams in search of starting pitching help this summer, the Washington Nationals may have themselves a trade candidate in 28-year-old left-hander Ross Detwiler. Per Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, the current reliever could be targeted and possibly returned to a starting role if dealt.
After serving as a starter for his first five full years in the majors, Detwiler was converted to relief this season due to Washington's formidable staff. The Nationals' starting five of Stephen Strasburg, Gio Gonzalez, Jordan Zimmermann, Doug Fister, and Tanner Roark has proven to be one of the best rotations in baseball this year, ranking 6th in the majors in ERA (3.33), first in FIP (3.26), and third in WAR (8.5). It is the primary reason why the Nationals are just a half game behind the Braves in the NL East despite a slightly below-average offense.
Detwiler, who owns a career 3.81 ERA and 4.15 FIP, has pitched decently in relief this year, though he has struggled at times and currently isn't serving in a high-leverage role, often pitching multiple innings during an appearance. In 22 games, the 2007 first round pick has thrown 36 innings, posting a 4.00 ERA, 4.99 FIP, and rather lackluster 1.29 K/BB. He is eligible for free agency following next season.
As Heyman suggests, Detwiler would be a starter on most teams, which could propel the Nationals to deal him in the coming weeks. The Angels, Indians, Mariners, Pirates, and Blue Jays could be among the teams interested if Washington deems him expendable.