Ian Desmond is still part of the #Nats future! Sign/Trade strategies!

It is February 1st and do you know where Ian Desmond is? Unfortunately Desi is one of the high profile free agents who still has not signed with a team.

If Ian Desmond is signed by any team (other than the Nats themselves) as a Free Agent prior to the June 2016 amateur draft, it will have a future impact on the Washington Nationals as the Nats would receive draft compensation no worse than the 31st pick overall in the 2016 amateur draft.

If any one of the following teams sign Ian Desmond prior to the June 2016 amateur draft, then the Nationals will receive no worse than the 30th pick in the draft: Mariners, Red Sox, Rays, Orioles, Indians, Twins, Angels, Astros, Yankees, Rangers, Mets, Dodgers, Blue Jays.

If any of those aforementioned teams sign Gallardo (except the Texas Rangers) or Dexter Fowler (except the Chicago Cubs), the Nationals could move up further in the draft and possibly receive the 28th overall pick.

If Ian Desmond is signed by any team (other than the Nats themselves) as a Free Agent prior to the June 2016 amateur draft, then worst case scenario the Nationals will possess the 30th overall pick as the draft compensation for Jordan Zimmermann as well as the 31st overall pick for Ian Desmond, and the 58th overall pick which is in the 2nd round, and the 94th overall pick which is in the 3rd round.  That is potentially 4 impact Draft Picks in the 2016 amateur draft.

That was a lot of “IF” and we have one more if/then statement for you.  If the Nationals signed Ian Desmond to a contract, the Nats wouldn’t receive any draft compensation meaning the Nats wouldn’t receive that 31st pick discussed above.  If the Nationals did re-sign Desmond, then the Nats could possibly trade Desmond in a creative and complicated scenario. MLB rules prohibit trading a Free Agent signed after the 2015 season and prior to June 15th 2016 unless the player gives permission and no more than $50,000 in cash can change hands.  If the Nats signed Desmond and got his permission, the Nats could trade him to a team like the Tampa Bay Rays.

Why would the Rays rather trade for Desmond instead of just signing him as a Free Agent? It’s not a simple concept, but put yourself in the Rays situation. If the Rays sign Desmond, Tampa would have to forfeit the 13th overall draft pick and give up their slot money.  Creativity between Matthew Silverman of the Rays and Mike Rizzo of the Nats could come up with a mutually beneficial solution using a sign & trade scenario.  The Nats would sign Desmond and get his permission to simulataneously trade him to the Rays for a prospect valued about what a 30th or 31st pick in the Draft would be worth.  It’s a win/win for both sides as the Rays retain their 13th pick and their slot money and the Nats are made whole.

Scott Boras appeared on MLB Network Radio this afternoon and spoke to the plight of Ian Desmond who Boras said is an “extraordinary Major League talent” and the whole QO (Qualified Offer) system Boras says “the Qualified Offer creates a great divide inside the offices of Major League teams” that not only ties a forfeiture of a draft pick to a player but also the team’s slot money. Boras called the system a “giant wart in our system that we need to correct”.

The whole interview with Casey Stern had some interesting moments as Boras likened himself to an OB/Gyn in that they deliver but sometimes it takes longer than others.  He also says he created the opt-out clause and that’s one of his strategies with Free Agents that also includes his drive-thru “Happy Meal” method.  It is best if you listen to the the whole interview if you are a subscriber!  If you aren’t a subscriber,  you can hear the portions of the Boras interview on Soundcloud.com.

In other news, Clint Robinson is already in Viera, Florida and for the first time in his career looks to be a near-lock for a bench job on the 2016 Nats roster.


Bryce Harper is already hitting bombs as he visited his old baseball field at the College of Southern Nevada


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