Pre-Black Friday shopping list for Mike Rizzo #Nats

Mike Rizzo has to buy some gifts for his new manager Dusty Baker, and we aren’t talking about a shirt and tie combination.  Rizzo has only given Dusty some housewarming gifts in Mike Maddux, Chris Speier, Davey Lopes, Jacque Jones, and Rick Schu for his coaching staff, and Chris Heisey was a player from Dusty’s past who was signed to a Minor League deal.

Big gifts to fill these holes:

  • Bullpen
  • Left-handed bat
  • Lead-off hitter

Mike Rizzo also wants to re-gift to some fellow GMs:

  • Jonathan Papelbon
  • Drew Storen

This would be a nice present to Dusty Baker if Rizzo could get him Darren O’Day.

Bryce Harper asked for his gifts on October 4th, and it’s still unclear if Mike Rizzo will get him what he wants:

“The one thing we definitely need is another left-handed bat and hopefully a HUGE right-handed bat to hit behind me or in front of me. If we can do that, that would definitely help us out and put us up to the top.”

Rizzo could certainly re-gift to Bryce the HUGE right-handed bat in the form of a reconditioned Ryan Zimmerman, Anthony Rendon, and Jayson Werth as all three were broken on delivery.  The left-handed bat that Bryce asked for could be gift wrapped for him as that has been acknowledged by Mike Rizzo as a need although we don’t know if that lefty will be an outfielder or infielder.

At the GM Meetings, Rizzo said, “We know that Matt den Dekker came on really well for us last year. We’re going to give him an opportunity to see what he can do as a fourth outfielder that can help us, but that’s not to say we’re not looking at every aspect of the roster. We know we need to get more left-handed to balance ourselves, to balance our lineup up, so we’re cognizant of those things.”

There really is a number of options for Mike Rizzo, and he has been busy as we have acknowledged with the managerial hire of Dusty Baker, coaching search and hires, revamping the medical and training department, Rule 5 moves, and signing some Spring Training invitees like Sean Burnett, Scott Sizemore, and Chris Heisey.

Updated 11/23/15 10:18AM EST:  Just spoke to a source on Darren O’Day and Rizzo wants to see what he could work out on a shorter term deal with an option which could meet O’Day’s financial demands.  As mentioned, O’Day is looking for a 4 year deal which could go for $36 million and that is not in Rizzo’s comfort zone as we’ve discussed before with his philosophies on relief pitchers.  Time to get creative.  O’Day just turned 33 last month and was a first-time All Star in 2015 and has averaged 65 innings of work the last 4 years.

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