The Nationals granted Strange-Gordon his unconditional release Sunday, Mark Zuckerman of MASNSports.com reports. Though Strange-Gordon cleared waivers after Washington designated him for assignment last week, he wasn't interested in reporting to Triple-A Rochester and will instead explore his options on the open market. Before being dropped from the 40-man roster, Strange-Gordon slashed .305/.305/.356 with three stolen bases across 59 plate appearances.
The Nationals designated Strange-Gordon for assignment Tuesday. Though Strange-Gordon has produced a .305 average on the season, he failed to draw a walk in 59 plate appearances and generated only two extra-base hits. His speed and positional versatility made him a useful bench piece, though he became somewhat expendable once utility man Ehire Adrianza was activated from the injured list earlier this month. The Nationals called up reliever Reed Garrett from Triple-A Rochester to replace Strange-Gordon on the 40-man roster and 26-man active roster.
The Nationals activated Strange-Gordon (personal) from the paternity list Monday. Victor Arano (knee) was placed on the 15-day injured list to open up room on the 26-man active roster for Strange-Gordon, who was away from the team over the weekend to observe the birth of his child. Now that he's back with the Nationals, Strange-Gordon is expected to settle back into a utility role.
Strange-Gordon was placed on the paternity list Friday, Jesse Dougherty of The Washington Post reports. Strange-Gordon welcomed the birth of his son Friday morning and will now be away from the team for a few days. Luis Garcia will continue to handle duties at shortstop while Lane Thomas could also see an uptick in usage.
Strange-Gordon will start in center field and bat ninth in Wednesday's game against the Mets. Alcides Escobar's (hamstring) move to the 10-day injured list Wednesday clears a path to playing time at shortstop, but Triple-A Rochester call-up Luis Garcia is expected to get the first crack at the everyday role ahead of Strange-Gordon, who had started to encroach on Escobar's playing time over the past two weeks. Strange-Gordon's ability to play the outfield and at second base will offer him a few more avenues to getting at-bats, and he'll draw his second consecutive start Wednesday after manning left field in Tuesday's 10-0 loss. Strange-Gordon went 3-for-4 with a stolen base Tuesday, marking the third consecutive start in which he's collected a steal.