After a topsy-turvy afternoon of trade rumors today, the Washington Nationals emerged with sought-after catcher Yan Gomes, formerly of the Cleveland Indians. Reports had linked both the division-rival New York Mets and former playoff nemeses the Los Angeles Dodgers to Gomes in trade talks, but it was the Nats who were able to seal the deal.
Gomes was one of the Indians’ numerous representatives on the American League All-Stars this past season, hitting .247/.744 in the first half. He actually turned on the afterburners and had a stronger second half, unlike some other “he was an All-Star!?” All-Stars, as he hit .295/.791 the rest of the way. It was a big rebound year for Gomes, who famously sacrificed a rotisserie chicken in the clubhouse to try to get himself out of a 2016 slump. He was decent in 2017 but still only managed a .232 average (.708 OPS). All told, in 2018, he turned in a .266/.762 line. Continue reading
Normally, tendering arbitration eligible players is a no-brainer on the deadline day. Today is that day for all MLB teams that will have to formally make decisions on tender/non-tender for 2019 contracts to unsigned players who are not signed to set contracts and this includes arbitration eligible players. The Nationals have seven players who are arbitration eligible, and here are their projected arbitration values via MLBTR: Anthony Rendon – $17.6 million , Tanner Roark – $9.8 million, Trea Turner – $5.3 million, Michael Taylor – $3.2 million. Kyle Barraclough — $1.9 million, Joe Ross – $1.5 million, and Sammy Solis – $900,000. Continue reading
Curt Blefary 1965 AL Rookie of the Year
Baseball is a sport of youth. Few things epitomize that more than the “Rookie of the Year.” Begun in 1947 on a national basis the award draws attention to the next-greatest-thing in the sport. Some of the winners, like this year’s phenom Ronald Acuna Jr. and Bryce Harper in 2012 were heralded long before arriving on the big stage. They were picked by pundits and analysts to make a splash and did not disappoint. Others emerged from seemingly nowhere to take the honor. Most who have won the award have gone on to have fine careers. Some 16 of the 110 retired award winners have been inducted into the Hall of Fame. Subtracting the 10 retired players in the 5-year HOF waiting period yields a rate of 1 inductee out of every 6 ROY award winners. On the other hand some honorees go on to relatively short and nondescript careers. Continue reading
The biggest Washington Nationals news on Tuesday was the acquisition of Brittany Ghiroli as a Nats beat writer for The Athletic. Some would say “finally” they hired someone at The Athletic whose main purpose is to cover the Nats and give some fresh perspective to a team that has few regulars on the beat. Many baseball fans know Britt Ghiroli from the Orioles beat and from her appearances on MLB Network. As a former collegiate swimmer at Michigan State, Ghiroli fits right in with athletes — even athletes who compete on grass and dirt. She does not know any of the current Nats players, but knows manager Dave Martinez who she covered with the Tampa Bay Rays back in 2008. Continue reading
Some media reports got the fans riled up after the Braves signed two former star players as they acquired Brian McCann and Josh Donaldson. All the Nationals did today was add right-hander Henderson Alvarez to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training to go with previous signings this off-season of Kyle Barraclough, Trevor Rosenthal, and Kurt Suzuki. Until the off-season is over and the regular season ends, why get upset about what other teams are doing in November. If Nats fans are getting agitated over Josh Donaldson who was injured for over 2/3rds of the season, then what will they do if Bryce Harper signs with the Philadelphia Phillies? Calm down. Continue reading
Most of the fan bases have created photoshop images and memes of Bryce Harper in their team’s uniform. The Winter Meetings start in exactly two weeks in Harper’s hometown of Las Vegas and get ready for a barrage of Harper sightings and more rumors. Harper will have to weigh all of the offers he receives which will have to exceed the $300 million for 10 years that the Washington Nationals reportedly offered. Harper and his advisers will most likely weigh the tax implications of any signing. Continue reading
By Friday, teams will have made their decisions on tender/non-tender for 2019 contracts to unsigned players who are not signed to set contracts and this includes arbitration eligible players. The Nationals have seven players who are arbitration eligible, and here they are with their projected arbitration values: Anthony Rendon – $17.6 million , Tanner Roark – $9.8 million, Trea Turner – $5.3 million, Michael Taylor – $3.2 million. Kyle Barraclough — $1.9 million, Joe Ross – $1.5 million, and Sammy Solis – $900,000. Continue reading
New this year to our Nationals’ gift guide is a subscription to SportsCrate.com starting at just $29.99 and click here as we do a reveal of our subscription with a box break. Use TALKNATS30 for a 30% discount until the end of the year.
Next up and not available for a week is the new Washington Nationals spring training cap which features the capitol dome and a block print “W”. They will go on sale initially at Winterfest on December 1st.
If you want something a little more affordable for a baseball experience, Andrew Ross aka Draz will once again be coordinating at least one TalkNats/HSI road trip through TravelNats. Last year’s trip to Philadelphia was very affordable for the game ticket and premium charter bus transportation for less than $99!
Photo by Laura Peebles for TalkNats
For most baseball executives, the day after Thanksgiving has little “Black Friday” shopping. The bargains are out there for most teams as we saw last year. There will be the Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, and Patrick Corbin deals that are like the Louis Vuitton boutique that never has a sale. Other players will be bargaining in the wheeler dealer negotiations. For Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo, he has signed three players under the radar already in the Kyle Barraclough trade, and the free agent signings of Trevor Rosenthal and Kurt Suzuki. The early bird gets the worm as they say. Continue reading
What they each should be thankful for:
Nationals fans are thankful that Steve keeps this blog going . . . all year round (speaking of round, a round of applause for Steve, please!)