Given the year-round nature of the baseball season and offseason these days, there's never a perfect time for reporters to go on vacation. But we all need our share of time off, especially after the long and very eventful season the Nationals just experienced.
So I'm punching my time clock today and heading out of town for a little while to spend some quality time with Mrs. Z on a beach in a much warmer climate than this. I'll return at the end of next week, hopefully tanned, rested and re-energized to cover the real meat of what should be an eventful offseason for the Nationals.
Obviously, there are several potential stories that could break in the coming days. Davey Johnson's contract to return as manager next season is all but finalized and could be announced sometime today. Adam LaRoche will likely decline the Nats' $13.3 million qualifying offer before today's deadline (though that doesn't preclude him from re-signing with the team this winter). And Bryce Harper, Johnson and Gio Gonzalez are all finalists for BBWAA awards that will be announced Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.
My colleague Chase Hughes from CSNwashington.com will be monitoring all of that in my stead, so you'll still be able to keep up on everything involving the Nationals. You'll probably also notice a couple of blog posts written by me in advance to help fill the void.
Talk to you all when I get back to town!