The story behind Lannan's 2012 demotion

The story behind Lannan's 2012 demotion
February 27, 2013, 10:30 am
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John Lannan left the Nationals after six major league seasons to join their division rival Phillies this offseason, leaving the team after a tenure that didn't end quite as he hoped. He spent much of his final season with the Nats stuck at Triple-A Syracuse despite starting two Opening Day games for the team in recent years.

On Tuesday Lannan opened up about his 2012 season with Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer and he has some interesting thoughts on how everything went down. For one, Lannan says Davey Johnson promised him the fifth starter spot nine days before taking it away. Ross Detwiler opened the season as the number five after an injury to Chien-Ming Wang.

Lannan would later request a trade via an e-mail to team beat writers, a move he now sees as a mistake.

"At the time," he said, "I thought it was a good decision. Looking back on it, you just have to live with it."

Lannan says he drove so fast to Syracuse after being optioned that he got a speeding ticket on the way. Clearly he was emotional after hearing the news. The most difficult part, he says, was watching the team finally succeed after years of losing, with him as a spectator.

Gelb's article has more on Lannan's new perspective and how long it took for the pitcher to get over his surprising demotion.