Nats Hope To Improve Middle Infield Defense

Amid concerns that Cristian Guzman's defensive abilities are fading, the Nationals will look for improved defense up the middle in 2010, according to's Bill Ladson. The Nats would apparently "love" to sign Orlando Hudson, who will be a free agent after the season. But, after last offseason, they realize he may choose to sign elsewhere, so they have a second option in mind.

The team is "seriously thinking" about moving Guzman to second base, where he has yet to play a game at the major league level. This would enable the Nats to upgrade defensively over Guzman, who has been a slightly below average defender every year since 2005, according to UZR/150

Marco Scutaro and Alex Gonzalez (team option) are among the better defensive shortstops who could be available on the open market and J.J. Hardy could be available in a trade. Alternatively, the Nats could try prospect Ian Desmond at short.

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