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Amanda Comak covers the Washington Nationals for The Washington Times.
The Nationals agreed to terms with relief pitcher Tyler Clippard on Tuesday and avoided arbitration. Clippard, 28, made $4 million in 2013. When filing for arbitration his representatives asked for $6.35 million, the Nats countered with $4.45 million and the two sides settled on $5.875 million for one year.
Gio Gonzalez' Tuesday routine includes throwing a bullpen session. His catcher? Former New York Yankee standout Jorge Posada, and to say Gonzalez idolizes Posada doesn't begin to describe his feelings.
Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg, first baseman Adam LaRoche and outfielder Bryce Harper all expect to be close to full health entering spring training after undergoing surgeries in the offseason.
The Nationals had two potential long-term contract extension candidates entering the offseason. On Friday, they avoided arbitration with both right-handed pitcher Jordan Zimmermann and shortstop Ian Desmond for the next two seasons. But, for now at least, that’s as far as it goes. Zimmermann signed a two-year deal worth $24 million. Desmond gets a two-year deal worth $17. 5 million. Extensions are still possible for both players, if less likely. Zimmermann and Desmond would be free agents after the 2015 season.
The Nationals have a better idea of their salary structure for the 2014 season now after avoiding arbitration with right-handed pitchers Jordan Zimmerann and Drew Storen. Zimmermann actually gets a two-year deal worth $24 million, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post. He will make $7.5 million in 2014 and $16.5 in 2015.
The Nationals will have stability at the upper levels of their minor league system in the coming years. One month after agreeing to a four-year player development contract extension with Triple-A Syracuse, Washington did the same with Harrisburg, its Double-A affiliate, on Wednesday. That takes the Nats through the 2018 season with both.
The Nationals concluded a relatively quiet Winter Meetings by losing a former high draft pick in the Rule 5 draft. Catcher Adrian Nieto was the team’s fifth-round pick in the 2008 draft. After fits and starts to his pro career, Nieto had finally begun to show the promise that made him such a coveted pick. But he still wasn’t ready to be added to the Nats’ 40-man roster.
The Nationals have been quiet during Major League Baseball's Winter Meetings. Their big splash last week was the acquisition of pitcher Doug Fister. But they finally made a move to bolster the bullpen on Wednesday with a trade for 6-foot-6 left-handed reliever Jerry Blevins.
By — Published December 10, 2013 Comments
Three key Nationals players had surgery after the season, but each should be ready for spring training. Stephen Strasburg had bone chips removed from his right elbow, first baseman Adam LaRoche had surgery on his left elbow and outfielder Bryce Harper had a procedure on the bursa sac in his right knee. Nothing has changed in the prognosis for any of the three
There's been lots of chatter over the first two days of Major League Baseball's Winter Meetings that the Nationals are talking to teams about potential deals for relievers Drew Storen and Tyler Clippard. Clippard has often been mentioned in deals over the last 18 months, though nothing's ever appeared imminent. Storen less so, though after a tough 2013 season – following his playoff meltdown against the St. Louis Cardinals the previous fall – some teams may sense a buy-low opportunity.
The Nationals are happy with their catching situation at this point in the offseason. Starter Wilson Ramos is healthy again after a left hamstring injury plagued him throughout the 2013 season. And general manager Mike Rizzo says that Jhonatan Solano and Sandy Leon are fine competing for the backup role. But if Ramos gets hurt again and misses a decent chunk of time? Then it's time to pick up the phone as they did two summers ago when acquiring Kurt Suzuki for the final two months of that season.
After a miserable 2013 season, Nationals infielder Danny Espinosa is looking to rebound next year. But he may have to do so as a utility man. Can he add third base to the list of positions he can play? The Nats believe he can.
Nationals hope the signing of outfielder Nate McLouth will help them weather any injuries to starting outfielders Jayson Werth, Bryce Harper and Denard Span.
The Nationals have signed reserve outfielder Nate McLouth to a two-year, $10.5 million contract, pending a physical, according to multiple media reports. The story was first reported by FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal.
The rumors swirled, one high profile teammate was traded and Doug Fister was just waiting for the phone to ring. It is an offseason of change in Detroit, where the Tigers lost manager Jim Leyland to retirement, sent first baseman Prince Fielder to Texas and were intent on trading from their deep starting rotation to fill other holes on the roster and clear space in the budget for other options.
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