Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Davey: No trades "imminent"

Associated Press
DETROIT — As the clock winds down to today's 4 p.m. trade deadline, the Nationals appear to be staying true to their word and refraining from making any moves that would alter their roster for the season's final two months.

Manager Davey Johnson spoke with general manager Mike Rizzo, who remains in Washington with other top front-office execs, this morning and came away with the same vibe he's had all week: Rizzo isn't planning any deals.

"He's always trying to do something to help the club," Johnson said. "But it didn't seem like there would be anything imminent."

The Nationals have maintained all along they didn't feel like a significant roster change would be prudent, neither as a way to boost a struggling club trying to get back in the pennant race nor as a way to dump veteran salaries. Entering today's series finale in Detroit, the Nationals are a season-high 10 games behind the Braves in the NL East, 6 1/2 games behind the Reds for the NL's final Wild Card berth.
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TexNat said...

I agree with not being buyers at this juncture. No need to compromise the future for what is a long shot at this point when you have a good young nucleus.

I will be concerned if they don't take steps in the off season to upgrade the line up. As long as the Nats are stuck in that TV deal, they are functionally a mid-market team. That means they have a limited window, and they need to do everything possible to win during that window.

Trotting out the same starting nine next season is simply not good enough.

Theophilus T. S. said...

I don't know where they were going to get a LH hitter anyway.

Anonymous said...

Rizzo is going to have to be a magician to upgrade the lineup even this offseason. LaRoche and Span won't bring back much in trades, but if they do ship them out, who do they replace them with? Tyler Moore and Brian Goodwin? The former's lack of plate discipline given his low OBP even inthe minors makes him risky to put at 1st, and he's considered to be a poor defender. As for Goodwin, he is looking like he will need at least one more year unil he is ready (assuming he ever is). If they move Zim to first and Rendon to 3rd, who plays 2nd? Lombo? Espinosa again? Those two aren't exactly upgrades at this point.

The Nats have to hope that Harper makes the leap next year to being a true MVP candidate, that Rendon figures things out and becomes the perennial .300 hitter he is touted to be and that vets Zim, Span and LaRoche bounce back to at least their career norms. It isn't crazy to think that most of those things could actually happen--especially under a new and hopefully more vibrant manager.

TexNat said...

Karl, it doesn't take a magician to sign free agents or make trades. You don't need to get much for Laroche and/or Span. You need to get one or both out of the way so you can replace them with a better offensive player.

Tcostant said...

Baseloaded, no out, one run. Same old, same old...

Don said...

Rizzo's just always seems convinced that his club is better than it is and he's just not been good at changing gears. Adjustments to the roster have been slow to happen mid-season over the years for Mike.

Anyway, there's no reason to trade Span, the guy is just not having a great year (and he's performing better over the last month anyway). LaRoche at his Dollars is close to unmovable, but it's just a matter of having a less than elite but better than a lot of guys 1B so I am not sure why people would want to move the guy (they'd have to eat some of his contract most likely anyway and not get a ton back and it may be that neither Moore nor Marrero is an every day player in the bigs).

To me the problems going forward are Werth's and Zim's contracts. If those guys do not perform well the club is hamstrung in a big way. The Nats have a decent amount of money coming off the books, but I doubt that they run back out and reload with a payroll as high as this year - Mark Lerner has warned us many times not to expect this kind of spending year over year. I also think that Desi should be traded this offseason while he has great value -- he's not worth the coins for a big extension. Love his game but the club can win with a cheaper option. We'll see how they play it. They had better be assertive and not just hope that these pieces will gel together to a winner, that is a path that will get Rizzo canned.

Tcostant said...

Don while I agree that Rizzo tends to overvalue his own players and the comment about Zimm and Werth are dead on, I couldn't disagree more about Desi. Desi is one of the top three SS in all of baseball and is young, he needs to get locked up.

Span can stick around one more year and try to play for a contract or while we see if Gooswin pushes him.

But Werth and Zimmerman's contract will have an effect, as I think the only one of Zimmermann or Strasburg will get a contract after after their FA year (even if they buy it out early). Good thing he sign Gio to that below market extention soon after he traded for him.

As for Rizzo, he might thinking about his own free agency, as ownership is using below market options on him rather than pay him market value. He might just look elsewhere in 2015.

Rizzo was very lucky that the two years we had the #1 pick, their were slam dunk one in a decade player, and he got both of them.

I still think this team should be in the playoff hunt, each of the next four years with this core. And that is pretty good.

Don said...

Tcostant -- I hear you, but I think that the Nats are just not that much better than anyone else out there (and their performance thus far this year is some proof sad to say). Having Stras, Gio and JZimm is the core that matters most. But the Phils have Hamels, Lee and Kendrick and they shed a lot of money this year and will relaod, the Fish now have a ton of young talent and salary flexibility like mad, the Braves have great position players for years to come and they have a ton of money to spend going forward too, and the Mets have Wright, Harvey and Wheeler plus more money than anyone (well, the Marlins will have lower obligations but less ability to go high, I guess) in the biggest market (at some point they start playing to win - and I think that they have $50M coming off the books for 2014). All things considered, the Nats are not so special.

Like I said, I love Desi's game, but on the downside, he's a streaky player both with his glove and bat, and a trade of the guy could net some great value. Teams win all over baseball with glove-first, cheaper SSs, the Nats can too. I am not pushing a move of the guy o much as hoping the club will be assertive and not be afraid to take some risk. The window to win is here they should not be timid.

Anonymous said...

TexNat - the free agent market is thin this year and trades take true prospects, of which we have not many.

mick said...

If Morse does end up in Balt...I will root for him. I am so disgusted with Rizzo and Davey.

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