Originally written on The Nats Blog  |  Last updated 2/7/13
  Throughout the offseason, The Nats Blog will look back at every player’s 2012 season to summarize and analyze his performance, and we’ll look ahead to his possible role in 2013. We’ll go from #1 Steve Lombardozzi all the way to #63 Henry Rodriguez until Spring Training. Enjoy. When the Washington Nationals traded for Gio Gonzalez from the Oakland Athletics, it became the biggest splash of the Nats’ 2011 offseason. Nats fans started getting excited about how the rotation was shaping up, and Gio didn’t disappoint. Gio led the pack among National League pitchers and commanded respect from opposing batters. He pitched 199.1 innings for the Nationals in 2012, and recorded a 2.89 ERA (sixth in NL), .206 batting average against (first in NL), and 1.13 WHIP (eighth in NL). His 207 strikeouts ranked fourth in the National League, and his 21 wins ranked first. All of these tremendous numbers are what earned him consideration as a Cy Young award finalist. He won Pitcher of the Month for May, when got the win in all five of the games he pitched, and recorded a 2.25 ERA and .156 BAA with 45 strikeouts. In 2012, Gio was also invited to play in the All-Star Game for the second time in his career, and he won the Warren Spahn Award as recognition for being the best left-handed pitcher of the year. He could also easily win MLB’s Most Permanent Smile Award if there was such a thing, as the most smiley National brought a great positive energy and sense of humor to the team.  After pitching for Oakland in the American League for four years, Gio only had seven career at-bats to his name when he moved to Washington. He didn’t have the most success at the plate (he finished with a .094 batting average), however, he did hit his first major league home run and he learned a little something about sliding when running the bases (Watch this and tell me you didn’t laugh). Next Year: Gio is signed to a five-year, $42 million contract, with team vesting options for 2017 and 2018, so he can be expected to be showing his smiling face around Washington for many years to come. If he is not subject to disciplinary action from MLB from the ongoing PED investigation he and several other players are involved in, he will pitch second in the rotation for the Nationals. Up Next: #48 Ross Detwiler  
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Jim Brown: I ‘encourage and support’ Johnny Manziel

Vincent criticizes NFLPA over spending millions on lawsuits

MLB urges Supreme Court to deny San Jose's A's appeal

Jeanie Buss: Phil Jackson loves the Twitter criticism

Vikings RB McKinnon: If I had a fantasy team, I'd take myself

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Kings have had discussions with John Calipari

De’Andre Johnson charged with misdemeanor battery

Russell Wilson on salary: If it's $25M or $1.5M, I'll be ready to go

Luke Ridnour reportedly traded for fourth time in a week

Scottie Pippen: I was LeBron James before LeBron James

Report: Marc Gasol only visiting with Memphis Grizzlies

Diamondbacks are contenders, but team's direction is unclear

Selecting the 2015 American League All-Stars

Jim Harbaugh is recruiting a prospect he once babysat

Conan makes Marshawn's wildest dreams come true

Brett Favre dons Packers jersey, says, 'I think I could still play'

Bo Knows, Bo Goes: Wisconsin feels pride and pain

Popovich won't call free agents at midnight, he'll be in bed

Joe Buck explains why he quit Twitter

Should the White Sox and Indians become sellers?

Fan bases most deserving of a Super Bowl 50 win

2015 NBA Draft grades: Eastern Conference

Report: Redskins urged by major group to change team name

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Selecting the 2015 AL All-Stars

NBA Draft grades: Eastern Conference

Under the radar NBA free agents

Michael Sam, boyfriend broke up?

Mickelson linked to money laundering?

Reminiscing on 'Love & Basketball' 15 years later

Selecting the 2015 NL All-Stars

The Sixers' latest horde

Projected landing spots for NBA's top free agents

MLB changes format for Home Run Derby

Revis to work out with Patriots DBs

Peterson: I'm still NFL's best RB

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.