Sunday, March 27, 2011

Morgan traded to Brewers

VIERA, Fla. -- The Nationals have traded Nyjer Morgan to the Brewers for minor-league infielder Cutter Dykstra and $50,000 cash, ending the outfielder's eventful tenure in Washington.

Morgan, who took D.C. by storm upon his acquisition from the Pirates in 2009 but fell out of favor during a trying 2010 season, had sensed his time with the organization was coming to an end this spring. With Rick Ankiel and Jerry Hairston beginning to take over in center field, Morgan had seen little game action in recent days.

Full story with quotes from Rizzo, Riggleman, Ankiel and Doug Melvin on


Marty said...

Many will say good-riddance, but it's still sad that it all went down like this.

sm13 said...

I'd be a lot sadder if Nyjer had done anything last year to endear himself to the club or the fans.

He may be playing the Marlins less, but he'll be seeing a lot more of the Cardinals...

joemktg said...

Happy that he is getting a fresh start.

Now let's start complaining about the leadoff spot...

rmoore446 said...

I need to check when we play the Brewers. The possibility of Nyjer antics will certainly be there.

It was time he moved on but I wish him well.

Anonymous said...

WOW, I must agree with Marty. I wish this had not happened this way. Then again, the situation was getting too complicated by his comments and then Riggs' reaction in the press. Some of these things should not have become public. That could have changed the outcome here I believe. I wish him luck...

and now our CF is last year's RF. Is Ankiel going to be this year's Willie Harris?

Richard Moore said...

Just noticed that Cutter is Lenny's son! That's a fresh story line.

JayB said...

Best news since Jason W signing....So cool...Wed I am going to walking around the park and even the field and NO MORGAN anywhere ever again.....I bet we hit him in his first AB in Nats Park in mid April...I will be there to see how much his teammates really did support heim

Anonymous said...

Oh and the guy we have gotten in return seems to have no position. One year he plays 2B, then next mainly 3B. He does seem to fit Rizzo's 'athletic' definition (just by his steal attempts). He is young though (only 21).

- FS

Pauloyd said...

Okay, now that this is done - what are the Nats going to do about the last bench spot. Are they really going to keep Stairs? Is he going to actually be the back-up 1B or are they going to move Morse?

JayB said...

Ankle and Harrison CF is a Huge step up from anything the Nats have ever had out there......On days that Roger plays left......that is the best defensive OF in Baseball! lease as far as throwing the ball goes....OF assists will spike and then nobody will even try to take extra bases by June.

Richard Moore said...

Cutter was a short stop that the Brewers tried to turn into a center fielder. He floundered there and they moved him to second base. All of that uncertainty combined with his father's well-publicized troubles had to make tough on Cutter.

citizen16 said...

Wow. I knew it was coming but it's still surprising for some reason to read the headline. Nyjer was so fun to watch when he first arrived. But he had used up every last bit of goodwill with everyone in town. I wonder if the bean ball war with the Cardinals last week that he triggered was the last straw and forced Rizzo to do something quickly or if this was inevitable before last season ended.

Regardless, I think everyone is better off with this move. I'm not sad to see him go and take his antics with him.

Last year the Nats didn't have a RF all season and now the team starts 2011 without a CF.

JayB said...

Willy Harris was not even 40% of the CFer Ankle is......this is a great move forward for the team.

Big Cat said...

Got Len Dykstra's boy Cutter Dykstra. Is a 21 year old 3b who was a 2nd round draft pick out of high school. Hit .312 in 100 games at Wisconsin of the Midwest league. I believe team played in Wausau which is a bandbox of a park. Cutter had only 5 homers in 300 plus ab's. Still, to get ANYTHING at all for Morgan, even an empty ball bag, is a steal.

Feel Wood said...

As the new Brewers mascot, will Nyjer be going feet first or head first down their home run slide?

Big Cat said...

Correction.....Wisconsin played in Appleton. Don't know that stadium

Frediemac said...

Remaining cuts...Detwiler, Cora, Bixler, Nix, and Balestar. 1st injury in Pitching staff brings Colin back to D.C.

Frediemac said...

After Stairs and Gaudin make the roster 2 players will have to be moved off the 40 man roster. Lee Hyde will be 1 but who will be the Other? That might be a tough call...Perhaps Garrett Mock ? Or is there another injury we haven't been told about?

Natsochist said...

Few thoughts:

1. Nyjer did not "trigger" the beanball war against the Cardinals. LaRussa decided that if anyone so much as breathes on his precious first baseman - even if said first baseman is in the basepath - then that person has affronted his sense of honor and must be dealt with.

Ahem...sorry; off that soapbox now.

2. Definitely agree that there must have been a better way to handle this. Nyjer was seeing two things happen: coaches praised his work ethic and willingness to learn new techniques, then said Ankiel was winning the CF job. Frankly, I'd be frustrated, too.

3. Related to #2, I sincerely hope Nyjer was informed of the trade by the proper authorities. The last thing we need to do is pull a Cubs-Silva maneuver.

Anonymous8 said...

Frediemac, I think Nix stays but agree with the rest. I was thinking Nix over Stairs.

Anonymous said...

I was at the game when Morgan ran out of his way to hit the Cards' catcher, who was standing, relaxed, with his back turned, when Morgan hit him.

I said to my friend, "That is the dirtiest thing I've ever seen on a baseball field."

Baseball people love to talk about "good-character guys." Morgan is low-character. Very, very, very low.

I'm sad about the way this is ending, but only because my hopes were so high at the beginning. As it turns out, no one told us we were getting a dirty player at the beginning.

Steve said...

Nyjer gets someplace to look for a fresh start, and the Nats get the possibility of something out of it. Win-win.

Frediemac said...

Desmond new Leadoff Hitter?

Frediemac said...

1. Desmond
2. werth
3. Zimmerman
4. LaRoche
5. Morse
6. Ankiel
7. Rodriguez
8. Espinosa

Of course Ramos will change that slightly when he starts

Nattydread said...

Unfortunately, it had to end this way. Nyjer could not step up --- except for a great streak, he was over-matched in the MLB.

Really. The Silver Elvis thing was great, and Tony Plush was great entertainment value for a losing team. Close that chapter.

Hope the change does him well. We needed to end this. Nice knowin' ya, dawg.

Anonymous8 said...

Anonymous said... and now our CF is last year's RF. Is Ankiel going to be this year's Willie Harris? March 27, 2011 10:03 AM

Yep, this is true and becomes a Rizzo fail. How could he put so much into Nyjer after Nyjer's pathetic 2010 season.

Luckily the 2011 team is in much better shape then the 2010 team so it can absorb this easier and while Ankiel may not be the answer, he can hopefully eclipse a higher OBP then .319 and score more runs then the previous CF.

Time to turn this page....

Jaxpo Nat said...

@Frediemac - got the bottom of the lineup wrong:

1. Desmond
2. Werth
3. Zimmerman
4. LaRoche
5. Morse
6. Ankiel
7. Espinosa
8. Rodriguez

Riggleman has said he doesn't want Espinosa hitting in front of the pitcher, as Desmond often did last year.

JaneB said...

I wish him well. I wish Cutter well, and hope he has his Dad's athleticism and last name and desire to win, and not much else. I'm sorry it went down like this -- like someone above said, it must have been frustrating to have worked so hard, improved by everyone's agreement, and still see things slipping away. I will always be grateful to him for that period in '09 when he made coming to the stadium worth it. It as bleak till he arrived. I'll be wearing my Morgan shirt when the Brewers play.

Harper_ROY_2012 said...

Good riddance Nyjer was a cancer that had to be removed and anything more than cash in return was charity from the Brew Crew. I cannot wait to boo Nyjer upon his return to Nats Park and maybe some lucky fan in the outfield will be lucky enough to receive one of his patented obsentity laced nonsensical tyraids and get hit by a ball he intentionally threw at them! finally, I hope Adam LaRoche het to clothesline him after JZimm drill him in the head with a 98 mph fastball!!!

Anonymous said...

I hope somebody sticks one right in his ribs when we play the Brewers.

Steady Eddie said...

@Anonymous8 at 10:53 am
A "Rizzo fail"? Not.

Even if we had only gotten Burnett in exchange for Milledge and Hanrahan, it's still a steal for the Nats.

Big Cat said...

Yes JaneB, lets hope Cutter doesn't have a lot of his fathers habits

Anonymous said...

This is ridiculous. I guess people have not received a 98 mph heater to the head to know what they are wishing for. Maybe people do not remember the image of David Huff lying on the mound after getting hit by ARod's line drive. I did not like Morgan much after his on- and off-field actions last season but most of us still wish him good luck on his new team, moved on to worry about our own team's problems than thinking of hitting a player who may not make it to OD.


Anonymous said...


I agree with you Marty. Morgan could not overcome the ill will created by the incidents last year. Lots had it in for him. A little chilling to see the joy some take in his downfall. It will be a very quiet team this year.

Theophilus said...

As to 40-man roster when Stairs and (unfortunately) Gaudin stick, Mock goes, and also Severinho. Nats do not need a 3d situational LH pitcher in the system at Syracuse, at least so long as Detweiler is not in the starting rotation.

Brian Benson said...

I agree with Jaxpo Nat


I hope someone can take Nyjer aside and teach him how the game is supposed to be played

Anonymous8 said...

Steady Eddie said...
@Anonymous8 at 10:53 am
A "Rizzo fail"? Not.

Even if we had only gotten Burnett in exchange for Milledge and Hanrahan, it's still a steal for the Nats.

March 27, 2011 11:22 AM

Its a fail because he didn't have Nyjer's successor in hand just like he didn't have Dukes last year.

I think an overwhelming majority in NatsTown saw that Nyjer couldn't reinvent himself so yah, it is a big fail as Rizzo has to anticipate these type of issues.

He gets a pass on not getting his ACE pitcher this off-season but can't get a pass on this. Ankiel may work on but his career numbers are not encouraging especially LH/LH.

I do give Rizzo credit for FINALLY getting rid of Nyjer.

Theophilus said...

On second thought, easy-offs the 40-man are Wang (to 60-DL) and Ramirez, back to Mets.

Anonymous said...

Frediemac. Dry white toast

The Adventurers said...

Ankiel won't hit against lefties. It will be a platoon w/ Hairston and their splits are good.

Anonymous said...

I don't think it was handled poorly. Riggs (and some of the players) were irritated by Nyjer's comments and told us. If we want them to be open and tell us what they are thinking we can't get too upset if they don't tell us what we want to hear.

Did you guys see the article in the Post about RZim wanting to stay in DC?

Bowden would have read that, thought "hometown discount," and lowballed him. Hope Rizzo doesn't.

BinM said...

Morgan gave the Nationals good work over the year & 1/2 he was in uniform, but proved to be a one-trick pony; His game was based purely on speed, and that might not last too much longer, as he turns 31 in July.

The team gets a much younger IF-UT prospect in return (turns 22 in late June), who has shown both speed (28SB in 2010) and patience at the plate (.416OBP in 2010) as well. A fair trade for both teams, given that MIL is looking for immediate returns, while the Nats are still a year-or-two from reaching full potential.

Theophilus said...

Anon is being too hard on Rizzo. Rizzo went to bed on December 10 (or whenever the winter meetings were over) thinking Morgan was going to the DR, play winter ball and learn (A) to hit the curve ball; (B) how lucky he was to be in the ML. Didn't work out that way. About Morgan there was silence until Spring Training. Since then he has been trying to blow smoke up the skirts of 29 other GMs, hoping one of them would believe all the nice things he was saying. When you've got a suspect player, the more praise, the less credibility, especially when the praise has no correlation with the performance. Whatever platitudes R&R uttered about Morgan were in the line of duty.

Joe Seamhead said...

Just think how bad our OF was a couple of years back... The likes of Milledge, Willy Mo, Adam"Bubble Gum" Dunn, Dukes, the list is endless of guys that were not MLB caliper defensive outfielders. Werth, Ankiel, Morse and Bernadina is dramatically better. Any combo of the four of them, along with the improved IF, will lower the ERA's of the pitching staff. Even Josh Willingham played a lot balls into extra bases.I'm with JayB on this one.
I'm thrilled to see him go and that we got anything at all for him, but you guys wishing for Nyjer to get plucked should be ashamed of yourselves.

Sue Dinem said...

Link in the name if you're interested in a scouting report on the younger Dykstra, who I believe is more likely to go to Hagerstown given the IFs expected at Potomac.

Andrew said...

Sue, I think he is going straight to Potomac.

Anonymous said...

Rizzo is backing himself into a corner. We can see the team he wants to make the run with. It doesn't include a leadoff hitter. When Bryce Harper shows up, and assuming they are wedded to Desmond and Espinosa until death do us part, the Nats run team will be all power not much speed. Pressure will be on Desmond to produce a decent OBP. Unless he cures the error problem and finds a way to get on base consistently and score some runs he will become the next designated POS which Nats fans so desperately need to have. Morgan was good for something after all. We will miss him in that regard.

GoNats said...

When Nyjer decided he wasn't going to Winter Ball, wasn't that the first sign that Rizzo should have had a Plan B in effect?

Ankiel in my mind is not the 2 year solution they need until Bryce Harper is ready. You can hope that Corey Brown is ready in June 2011 but it is still too much hoping and not a sure thing. This bit the Nats in the behind going the same route when Elijah Dukes was sent packing in early March 2010.

I think it is a fail from the standpoint of preparedness much as Cashman for the Yankees has gotten a big fail for not getting Cliff Lee and having no Plan B. The GMs job is a tough one and Rizzo can stand the heat so he doesn't need to get out of the fire.

Anonymous said...

While i'm not exactly devastated that Morgan is gone, i do find it it odd that according to Rizzo, it was more of " what Ankiel did than what Morgan didn't do". Besides being a good defensive outfielder, Ankiel has no speed, a low BA and decent power mitigated by high strikeout totals.At least with Morgan you had someone who can give you a little bit of everything and more importantly, who can at least fit the bill as a leadoff hitter. Desmond as leadoff? Please...

Bote Man said...

I hope Nyjer doesn't let the screen door slam him in the butt on the way out.

On second thought, I don't really care if it does.

Anonymous said...

Rizzo isn't backing himself into a corner ... not in the least. Now Riggleman may be another story ...


by midseason becomes


Before too long ... along with trades of Ankiel and Hairston for much
needed prospects.

Anonymous said...


Erase Brown/Bernadina when Harper arrives. Laroche/Marrero a wash. Is Lombardozzi really going to play better than Desmond and/or Espinosa? I wouldn't bet on it. Still big and slow no matter how you look at it. No leadoff.

Sec 3, My Sofa said...

Mark, in your story, you wrote "His performance last season severely declined, though, as did his reputation within the Nationals clubhouse and around baseball."
Not disputing it, but I don't recall reading any quotes, attributed or not, from teammates, to that effect. What did I miss?

Golfersal said...

I guess my reading most of the comments here that Nyjer will be missed as much as Elijah Dukes was missed last year.
Boy Morgan wore out his welcome, I have to think that if he played winter ball it would of made him more welcome by management. It's funny how each comment that we see about Morgan we get the disappointment from management that he didn't play in the Dominic league.

Be interesting to see how he does for the Brewers, have to think that he is bottling up a lot of anger and wants to prove something.
So now we have three players to watch outside of the Nats, Dunn in Chicago, Willingham in Oakland and Nyjer in Milwaukee

NatsJack in Florida said...

Quick!!! Who's the lead off hitter for the San Francisco Giant???? Anyone???

So much for the important lead off hitter.

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