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Nats' top pick from '17 sent home for rules violation

Lefty Romero is ranked by MLB Pipeline as club's No. 5 prospect
MLB.com

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- The Nationals sent home left-hander Seth Romero, their first-round pick in the 2017 Draft, for violating club policies on Monday.

It is unclear how long the 21-year-old's absence will be or what rule he violated, but a source told MLB.com that Romero did not violate any Major League Baseball policies.

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WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- The Nationals sent home left-hander Seth Romero, their first-round pick in the 2017 Draft, for violating club policies on Monday.

It is unclear how long the 21-year-old's absence will be or what rule he violated, but a source told MLB.com that Romero did not violate any Major League Baseball policies.

View Full Game Coverage

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Romero, ranked by MLB Pipeline as the club's No.5 prospect, was widely considered a top-10 talent coming into the Draft, but he fell to the Nationals at 25th overall after his stock dropped amid character concerns. Romero was twice suspended by the University of Houston baseball team before being dismissed permanently.

Washington normally avoids players with such concerns, but Romero's big fastball, wipeout breaking ball and changeup made him one of the top left-handers in the Draft, and the club took a chance.

"I don't see an issue with this kid," Nationals scouting director Kris Kline said after the Draft.

When the Nats selected Romero in June, they were in dire need of bullpen help and Romero was considered one of the most Major League-ready pitchers in the Draft. If not for their shrewd moves before the non-waiver Trade Deadline, the Nationals might have had to fast-track Romero to the Majors. Instead, he appeared in just seven games between short-season Class A and rookie ball, striking out 35 batters in 22 innings.

Jamal Collier has covered the Nationals for MLB.com since 2016. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier.

Washington Nationals, Seth Romero