Nats Seeking Leadoff Hitter

Nationals manager Jim Riggleman says that he would like to get a leadoff hitter for next season, writes Bill Ladson of MLB.com.  While there are already several candidates in-house such as Nyjer Morgan, Roger Bernadina, Ian Desmond, and Danny Espinosa, the club may look to the free agent market or the trade block to get someone for the top of the order.

As we learned last month, Washington has strong interest in Carl Crawford who figures to be one of the biggest draws on the open market this winter.  Obviously, there will be plenty of suitors for the 29-year-old and the Nats may not be able to beat out teams with deeper pockets.

Our own Ben Nicholson-Smith sees another free agent left fielder, Corey Patterson, as another potential fit.  With a glut of outfielders, the Orioles may not bring the 31-year-old back in 2011.  Patterson could have some appeal to the Nats as a fourth outfielder who can lead off. There could also be some interesting options available via trade such as Jacoby Ellsbury, Reggie Willits, and Kosuke Fukudome.


Leave a Reply

35 Comments on "Nats Seeking Leadoff Hitter"


Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

I would love to see Jacoby Ellsbury on the Nats, but I wonder if the Nats have the edge over the Angels in the Crawford sweepstakes…I’m not saying they do, I’m just saying theres a chance.

4 years 11 months ago

Angels have a better chance to win soon than the Nats. So unless the Nats throw way more money than anyone else, he won’t be going there

myname_989
4 years 11 months ago

I disagree. As a Phillies fan, I see the Nats a lot, and I’m sure you’ve heard it by now, despite who you root for… The Nats are a pain to play. They are a couple pieces from blowing past being a pest to being a real competitor. They have some scary good, young pieces, some of which were just introduced to the majors this year.

They have talent at premium positions: Ryan Zimmerman (who I think should be playing second base, but that’s a different story.) at third, Ian Desmond / Danny Espinosa up the middle, Josh Willingham and Nyger Morgan in the outfield, Wilson Ramos behind the plate being mentored by one of the greatest catchers of all time in Pudge Rodriguez… and the number of young pitchers in, Jordan Zimmerman, Craig Stammen, John Lannan…

The Nationals have a very young, talented team, just waiting to bust out of the cellar. Looking ahead to 2011, I think they have more talent than both the Marlins and Mets, and can compete with the Phillies and Braves. What they should look to do is add some veteran presence. Resigning Adam Dunn should be a priority. They could make a real splash and add Carl Crawford to the outfield, or go out and get a defensive oriented thrid baseman and move Ryan Zimmerman from the hot corner, seeing as his arm just isn’t there anymore.

That along with adding a couple of veteran arms to the starting rotation to compliment their young guys, a horse in Livan Hernandez, and a Yunesky Maya that has adapted to pitching in the MLB, along with a few bullpen arms to mentor Drew Storen, and the Nationals are a very talented, very good team.

Sorry, had to rant about that. Lol

strasburgsavior
4 years 11 months ago

This was a very good post except for one thing.
“Ryan Zimmerman (who I think should be playing second base, but that’s a different story.) at third…or go out and get a defensive oriented thrid baseman and move Ryan Zimmerman from the hot corner, seeing as his arm just isn’t there anymore.”
Are you out of your MIND? Ryan Zimmerman is the best defensive third baseman in the National League. He doesn’t need to be messed with. Plus they have Espinosa at second who also has fantastic range, what are you going to do with him? Zimmerman does not need to be and will not be moved from third.

myname_989
4 years 11 months ago

Listen, I like Ryan Zimmerman a lot, and he’s one of the best hitting third baseman in the game, but the guy has no arm to throw from the hot corner. Judging by your name, I’m going to assume that you’re a Nationals fan, so I’m not saying you’re wrong, but from the limited time I’ve seen Zimmerman, his throws have been terrible. His bat is best served as a first baseman, but as I said, I think it is imperative that the Nats resign Adam Dunn. I realize that this creates a log jam up the middle, with Zimmerman moving off of the hot corner, but Espinosa is versatile enough to play other positions. Fact of the matter is that Ryan Zimmerman, despite his strong UZR, has declining arm strength and won’t be able to sustain third base much longer.

He is far from the best third baseman in the National League. Off the top of my head, Placido Polanco, Scott Rolen, Chase Headley, Ian Stewart, and even David Wright have been much better at third base, and that’s just in the NL.

strasburgsavior
4 years 11 months ago

Really?
Let’s look at their respective WAR:
Ryan Zimmerman: 7.3 (third in ALL of baseball and only 0.1 behind Joey Votto)
Placido Polanco: 3.3
Scott Rolen: 4.4 WAR
David Wright: 4.3 WAR
Chase Headley: 3.9 WAR
Ian Stewart: 2.0 WAR

And don’t even try to tell they are better fielders than Zimmerman, that’s laughable, he leads all third baseman in MLB in UZR (15.9).

Much of Zimmerman’s value comes from his spectacular range which is of more value at third base (much more value) than it would be at first base. You’re making a mountain out of a molehill, he’s had 330 chances at third base and has made 10 throwing errors. Now how many of those can we attribute to having the unathletic Dunn at first base? We don’t know but what we do know is that sure he can reach high to grab throws but he can’t move laterally and has probably contributed (I’ve seen it happen) to some of those errors.

jimboslice9
4 years 11 months ago

Just like to mention they also have Bryce Harper available in the outfield in about 2-3 years.

jimboslice9
4 years 11 months ago

Just like to mention they also have Bryce Harper available in the outfield in about 2-3 years.

Tigerfan93
4 years 11 months ago

Crawford sweepstakes looks like this: Yankees, Angels, Tigers, rest of league.

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

Listen, I would agree, but Granderson has been playing great lately, do they just trade him? I seriously don’t know but the order you suggested is the obvious order until grandy started hitting great. I would honestly out the Angels and Tigers as the frontrunners now.

4 years 11 months ago

They shouldn’t trade him at all. His power numbers are there, and he’s poised to have a rebound season next year if he stays healthy. Obviously a better long term option than most including Melky Cabrera, no offense to him.

4 years 11 months ago

They shouldn’t trade him at all. His power numbers are there, and he’s poised to have a rebound season next year if he stays healthy. Obviously a better long term option than most including Melky Cabrera, no offense to him.

melonis_rex
4 years 11 months ago

The Yankees’ budget isn’t infinity, and it makes way, way more logical sense for them to 1) sign Cliff Lee/a starting pitcher or two, and 2)sign a DH to a short term deal.

Granderson, Gardner, and Swisher are ALL really, really good.

42214221
4 years 11 months ago

morgan 4 tony Jr

Ty
4 years 11 months ago

Fred Lewis? He said he sees himself as an everyday player and the Jays presumably disagree, but he’s not really a huge upgrade for the Nats.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

Sure. I would trade him for a decent prospect.

myname_989
4 years 11 months ago

I can’t see him being dealt for a decent prospect. The Jays picked him up for a PTBNL or Cash Considerations, and I haven’t heard of them acquiring a PTBNL.

Ty
4 years 11 months ago

Nobody’s going to give anything of value up for him, but if be wants out it might be best for all involved. There’s not really a lot of room for him in Toronto’s outfield and a guy like Wise makes a better bench player than Lewis.

4 years 11 months ago

Scott Podsednik seems like a natural fit, although I’m not sure if the nats are willing to sacrafice more defense.

4 years 11 months ago

Your own Ben Nichlolson Smith doesn’t realize that Corey Patterson has already been on the Nationals once and was unable to crack an outfield that wasn’t nearly as talented as the one now. Really — know what you’re talking about before starting ridiculous rumors.

4 years 11 months ago

I’m not a huge fan of Nyjer Morgan.. but how is Corey Patterson and his career .293 OBP an upgrade?

4 years 11 months ago

I’m not a huge fan of Nyjer Morgan.. but how is Corey Patterson and his career .293 OBP an upgrade?

el_doggo
4 years 11 months ago

JUAAN PIEEERRE?

Delaney4three
4 years 11 months ago

Wilson Ramos for Jacoby Ellsbury?

johnsilver
4 years 11 months ago

Please be serious. This is Theo Epstein, not Omar Minaya the Nats will be dealing with for Ellsbury. Granted Ells was hurt for most of the season, but they are going to want a top prospect for a position they don’t have well covered in their system and Catching they have well covered at AA. Lavarnway and Exposito. Lavarnway was the Red Sox Offensive player of the year for minor league system in 2010 and will be starting out at AA and Exposito will be in AAA to start, probably Boston by the end of the season if Martinez is not resigned.

johnsilver
4 years 11 months ago

Please be serious. This is Theo Epstein, not Omar Minaya the Nats will be dealing with for Ellsbury. Granted Ells was hurt for most of the season, but they are going to want a top prospect for a position they don’t have well covered in their system and Catching they have well covered at AA. Lavarnway and Exposito. Lavarnway was the Red Sox Offensive player of the year for minor league system in 2010 and will be starting out at AA and Exposito will be in AAA to start, probably Boston by the end of the season if Martinez is not resigned.

mstrchef13
4 years 11 months ago

Anyone who sees Patterson as a leadoff option hasn’t been paying attention to his career at all. The only time he has had success as a major leaguer he was hitting 6th or 7th. In his career he’s walked more than 25 times ONCE. Despite his excellent speed and bunting ability he has the mentality of a power hitter, striking out in over 20% of his at bats for his career. His on base percentage has been lower than the league average in EVERY year of his career, according to baseball-reference.com.

The_Porcupine
4 years 11 months ago

I honestly can’t think of any leadoff hitters that would be interesting to me (I don’t see Crawford as a leadoff hitter, he’s more of a run producer). There are plenty of Podsednik, Fred Lewis types out there, but they already have their own version in Nyjer (admittedly a head case that needs replacement). Seattle might be willing to move Figgins. Oakland might move R. Davis if they keep Coco Crisp. I’m sure the Mets would move L. Castillo. But I’d like the Nats to look at dealing with either the Rockies or with Cleveland. Both teams have two speedy leadoff types (Fowler and Young in Col. and Brantley and Crowe in Clev.). Now I don’t know if any of them have the skill set to be a legit leadoff hitter, But I’d like that kind of trade more than picking up a Podsednik.

4 years 11 months ago

I’m pretty sure Cleveland doesen’t want to deal Michael Brantley, since he’s looking like their future lead-off hitter.

inkstainedscribe
4 years 11 months ago

Nate McLouth … Please?

PRKnight
4 years 11 months ago

i wonder if the yanks offer gardner if nats are looking for a lead off player, it would obviously open a door for crawford and could bring something in from the trade. I personally would keep gardner, i like his moxy. Well have to wait a see what them yanks decide cuz crawford has been on their radar for years

boy9988
4 years 11 months ago

Would Washington be willing to pick up Chone Figgins contract? Seattle may not ask for too much in return. Figgins just doesn’t have a place on this team next year with Ackley probably coming up in May or June.

boy9988
4 years 11 months ago

Would Washington be willing to pick up Chone Figgins contract? Seattle may not ask for too much in return. Figgins just doesn’t have a place on this team next year with Ackley probably coming up in May or June.

$4555515
4 years 11 months ago

patterson couldnt crack the nats team in a less talented outfield so what makes u think he’ll crack the team now

i highly doubt the nats are interested in corey and i doubt even higher corey is interested in the nats

$4555515
4 years 11 months ago

patterson couldnt crack the nats team in a less talented outfield so what makes u think he’ll crack the team now

i highly doubt the nats are interested in corey and i doubt even higher corey is interested in the nats