The Nationals didn't get off to the prettiest start in their first week back, dropping two of three games to the visiting New York Yankees.
It's not all bad, though, as there were plenty of positives to take from the series, with the Nats scoring 12 runs, and Max Scherzer and Patrick Corbin both looking great in their first starts.
106.7 The Fan's Grant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier preview the most pressing Nats topics in this weekly video series, giving their opinions on how Washington's season's unfolding and keeping you up to date on their footing in the NL East, while highlighting key plays.
Patrick Corbin was good enough to pitch a complete game in Sunday's 3-2 loss, allowing just two hits and one run across 6.1 innings, but Corbin was pulled at the first sign of trouble in the seventh, only to be let down by the Nationals bullpen.
It seems like an annual tradition, Washington's bullpen opening the season on its heels. In a shortened season, however, Sean Doolittle looking less than sharp and newcomer Will Harris not being able to protect a league brings an added level of concern. Certainly, with less time to build up their arms than in a normal year, it's too soon to put too much stock in these early warning signs.
One reason to assuage early panic is Major League Baseball announcing its expansion of the postseason from its traditional 10-team format to 16 teams. That should take some of the sting out of these early season losses.
The 37-year-old Kendrick is barreling the baseball and commanding respect from opposing pitchers in his new DH role, a sign of good things to come for the offense.