Nationals trade Roark to Reds
Dilip Vishwanat / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The Washington Nationals traded starter Tanner Roark to the Cincinnati Reds for right-hander Tanner Rainey, the team announced on Wednesday.

Washington was reportedly exploring trading Roark earlier this week, with an eye on grabbing another pitcher through free agency to supplement its rotation. The team signed Patrick Corbin to a $140-million contract before the winter meetings, giving Washington a dynamic front of the rotation while also making Roark expendable.

The Nationals are considering veteran free agent Anibal Sanchez as a replacement for Roark, according to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.

The Reds have been trying to upgrade their rotation all winter and have been connected to multiple available names through both trade and free agency. Roark slots into the top of their starting staff right now, but he could be a solid arm at the back end of the rotation if they're able to add another pitcher.

Roark posted a 4.34 ERA, 4.27 FIP, 1.28 WHIP, and 146 strikeouts in 31 appearances (30 starts) for the Nationals last year, while also losing an NL-leading 15 games. The 32-year-old is projected by MLB Trade Rumors to earn $9.8 million in 2019 and will become a free agent next winter.

Rainey, who was ranked as the Reds' No. 23 prospect by MLB Pipeline, appeared in eight games with Cincinnati last year, but spent the majority of his season at Triple-A Louisville. The 25-year-old crafted a 2.25 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, and 65 strikeouts to 35 walks over 44 relief appearances with Louisville.

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Nationals trade Roark to Reds
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