NL East Notes: Rollins, Nats, Nathan, Marlins

On this day three years ago, the Phillies sewed up a World Series title by finishing off the Rays in the resumption of a rain-suspended Game 5. Here's an item regarding that Philly team's shortstop, and a few others from around the NL East …

  • Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins tells CSNPhilly.com that he expects the Phils to make him an offer before he officially hits free agency (video link), though he's not sure what the terms of that offer might be.
  • Nationals GM Mike Rizzo thinks his club can contend for the NL East title in 2012 with the addition of an outfield bat and a starting pitcher, according to Bill Ladson of MLB.com. Washington might also pursue Albert Pujols or Prince Fielder, opines Ladson, as the Nats have made "no promises" to Adam LaRoche.
  • Closer Joe Nathan, whose $12MM 2012 option was declined this week by the Twins, said the Mets will be on his radar during his foray into free agency, according to Greg Logan of Newsday. Nathan is a New York native and attended Stony Brook University on Long Island.
  • Marlins president David Samson said Florida plans to have a busy but prudent offseason and raise its payroll in 2012, according to Joe Frisaro of MLB.com. "We're going to be very aggressive, but we're not going to be foolish. That's the key. When you raise your payroll, you've got to do it smartly, because if you don't, you are losing 90 games at a higher payroll." Frisaro speculates the Marlins' payroll will be roughly $85MM in 2012, which would be a $27MM increase from 2011's $58MM.


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51 Comments on "NL East Notes: Rollins, Nats, Nathan, Marlins"


wickedkevin
3 years 8 months ago

Sizemore to the Nats could be interesting. 

3 years 8 months ago

I get the impression that the Tribe will still try to bring Grady back on a pretty generous, incentive laden deal. 

John McFadin
3 years 8 months ago

While I do think the Marlins will raise their payroll, I highly doubt they raise it that much.

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 8 months ago

Actually, Marshall Harris had a sit down interview with Jimmy and his wife Jahari and that’s where that video came from.

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 8 months ago

I don’t think the Nationals are good enough to beat the Phillies, unless they make some huge splashes with regards to their pitching staff, first base, and center field. (which they might and the article clearly dives into that).

For me, they’re a definite wild card threat if they address just ONE of those issues, and a Wild Card lock if they address two. (getting an Ace is #1, IMO, especially with innings limits on Strasburg).

That said, nationally, nobody thought the Phillies could beat the Mets (and they probably shouldn’t have). Any thing can happen, but just looking on paper, that’s what I think the Nationals need to do to be the best team in the division.

The Nationals have a good bullpen, good offense, defensively they aren’t that great and they kick the ball around a lot and beat themselves, but the potential for success is definitely there, just a matter of, at this point, getting the right pieces to make them successful.

I’d love to see if Nationals fans agree with that assessment or if not, what they feel their needs are, definitely going to be a team to watch this offseason.

3 years 8 months ago

Do the Nationals have fans?

kräftig. entschieden
3 years 8 months ago

Nice one, you come up with that yourself?

MetsMagic
3 years 8 months ago

With them from the underbelly of the Montreal Expos, I can understand your perception. Baseball in DC (Senators) has been a longer standing tradition than you being a complete tool. 

NickinIthaca
3 years 8 months ago

ZING!

kräftig. entschieden
3 years 8 months ago

I would disagree on the offense, it was pretty awful last year, mostly contingent on developing rookies and underperforming/injured veterans, and everyone striking out altogether too much. If they can grab a decent leadoff hitter, cut back on the strikeouts, and have injured players come back/Jayson Werth not suck, their offense will be competent but probably not great. I’d agree with the assessment of the strong bullpen. And the defense has been up and down for the Nats this year, but overall I think that its improved immensely. Desmond has become quite good at shortstop, Espinosa has been consistently excellent at 2nd, Zimmerman is a Gold Glove at 3rd, and LaRoche, before he kicked the shoulder surgery bucket, looked surprisingly good at first. Werth has had some outfield adventures and no one’s going to pretend that Michael Morse is a great defender, but along with a really good CS rate from Ramos, I’d call the Nationals’ defense at least above average. Dunno if the metrics would back me up on that.
Their rotation stands, right now, as Strasburg/Zimmermann/Lannan/CM Wang (extension likely)/(Detwiler/Peacock/Milone). That fifth spot could open up for any of those three pitchers, and of them Peacock is the most highly regarded by most scouts. Detwiler is out of options, though, so he may get the spot by default or get transferred to the bullpen, where he excelled early in the year. Getting an ace would be great, but relying on CJ Wilson and Yu Darvish for that need is riskier than waiting a year and signing someone like Matt Cain or Zack Grienke or (don’t mean to be coveting my neighbor’s wife, but) Cole Hamels. By 2013, Stras will be off the strictest limits, Zimmermann will have another year, Peacock should be up, Harper will probably be starting, Ramos/Espinosa will hopefully continue developing… as a Nats fan, I want to be optimistic about 2012, and maybe if a lot of things go right we can contend, but I think 2013 is more realistic.
The No. 1 priority this offseason, to answer your question, is signing Ryan Zimmerman to a long-term deal.

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 8 months ago

My theory on them needing an ace this year is based less on the talent aspect and more on the fact they need a guy to give them 200+ quality innings. Their rotation is so young besides Lannan and Wang that their innings are going to be limited and it’s going to tax the bullpen. Plus, if they are contending, they need someone to match up with Halladay, Hanson, etc. Ultimately, that’s why I believe it’s less likely they’ll contend for the division next year. (anything can happen, just on paper, it probably won’t).

I agree they should be more aggressive next year, much better free agent class.

I’d love to see them sign Fielder to break up the righties and upgrade the offense (wouldn’t love but you know what I mean). but I think signing him or Pujols might end up being a mistake when they have Strasburg, Zimmerman, etc to pay for. Obviously anybody would love to add those bats to the line up though.

Centerfield has a decent market this year with Sizemore, among others. Not sure if they want to completely upgrade that position or leave some flexibility for Werth to move there when Harper comes up.

Their defense I agree will improve if LaRoache returns or they sign one of those big name first baseman.

I definitely expect a lot of big things out of them in 2013. I think 2012 is going to be more of a year where they show the league their ready, (sort of like the 2006/7 Phillies).

At the very least, they’re going to make the playoffs in the near future, division winner or not.

FS54
3 years 8 months ago

Neither Pujols nor Fielder are known for their defense. LaRoche is their best defensive option at 1B. Signing either Albert or Prince makes Adam expendable but he can not get anything of value back in a trade at this point, when he is recovering from a season ending injury. If they want to make a big splash, it should be a starting pitcher Darvish or CC. Besides I don’t think they need a Pujols or Fielder because their immediate need is a on base machine who is a base stealing threat at top of the lineup. My additions would be a good CF who can do these two things and a starter this off-season, preferably through free agency. I agree with Nick that they need to get Ryan Z under contract also. 

hallwagner
3 years 8 months ago

pujols is known for his defense and has multiple gold gloves…

kräftig. entschieden
3 years 8 months ago

I like the comparison you’re making to the 2006 Phillies. As for Fielder… as cool as it would be, Rizzo has a pretty strong tendency towards athleticism, and has previously said that he’s content with LaRoche coming off injury at first and Morse in left. Unless Lerner really bucks up and doesn’t just loosen the purse strings but removes them altogether, I don’t see them signing Fielder.

Sizemore is an interesting option. I think Rizzo’s first choice would be Denard Span if he’s not still concussion-loopy or maybe even Coco Crisp. They’re both more stereotypical leadoff men. But I would definitely advocate Sizemore over someone like BJ Upton. There’s a feeling that Rizzo’s first priority would be to sign/trade for a centerfielder, but wouldn’t be afraid to go to a corner if it’s the best fit (which bumps Werth over to center, where he’s actually looked pretty good.

I imagine they’ll be fringe-y next year and a good shot at the Wild Card in 2013. Braves are still good. Mets have money. Marlins are volatile. Reports of the Phillies’ death have been greatly exaggerated. It’ll be a fun division to watch for the next couple of years, it could go a lot of ways.

MetsMagic
3 years 8 months ago

The Phillies are phalling phast and without Howard, I don’t see how they could stand up to what the Nats are supposed to be. 

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 8 months ago

Howard is going to be out a month.

Having Halladay, Lee, and Hamels can hide a lot of weaknesses. They still have a decent line up and it’s not like they’ve never played or won without Howard before (see: 2010).

Besides even if the Phillies don’t win 102 games, they’re still a solid ball club. I just don’t think the Nationals are ready to beat them. Atlanta as it stands right now could.

MetsMagic
3 years 8 months ago

Utley isn’t what he was. Rollins might not be back next year, and Ibanez just plain sucks (is he an FA?). I’d be cautious about penciling in a team built around pitchers over 30 and nothing else as the surefire winners. 

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 8 months ago

Ibanez is gone. He was a below replacement level player so losing him is actually an upgrade of itself.

… besides relying on pitching worked for them this year and it worked for Atlanta. (Hamels isn’t 30 btw).

and I’m not just basing it around that. Antonio Bastardo developed into a legit set up man, their bullpen prospects should all be contributers by mid season, and a solid line up. Pence is good, Victorino is good, Utley isn’t what he once was but he’s still a good 2nd baseman.

If anybody supplants them next year, I’d imagine it would be Atlanta. Especially since Strasburg is going to get capped off.

Muggi
3 years 8 months ago

While I’m not referring to you post per se, I think it’s been pretty hilarious seeing how Philly haters have switched from “HAHA YOU’LL NEVER WIN WITH THAT USELESS F- AT 1ST BASE” to “HAHA YOU’LL NEVER WIN WITHOUT THE INCREDIBLE RYAN HOWARD”

MetsMagic
3 years 8 months ago

Howard’s home run rates are incredible. He’s a lot like a McGwire or a Kiner, not really the most well rounded player but has the raw power that a team that is weak offensively needs in the middle of the lineup. 

FS54
3 years 8 months ago

Nationals main problem last season was consistency. Besides two great months (June and September), they had trouble playing .500 ball for rest of the months. Maybe scheduling had something to do with it, maybe not.

Anyways, I agree with Rizzo on one bat and one starter away from contending.

hallwagner
3 years 8 months ago

nats defense was middle of the pack last year. 16/30 in mlb fpct. don’t really think thats an area that needs to be addressed as much as others. the offense was crap last year, but i think that will fix itself as well. a full year of zimmerman, and hopefully werth can hit like we pay him 2 (not gonna happen, but at least .280 20 100). i also think espinosa will improve as he got hot at the end of last year. if we add a cf/leadoff guy, i don’t think there will really be any questions in our lineup except for desmond. desmond has the talent to be a 280 hitter with 10-15 homers a year and 30 steals, he’s just really streaky, and i hope that changes next year

TartanElk
3 years 8 months ago

So, Nathan is basically saying, “The Mets are a team notorious for overpaying. Sure! I’d love to play for them!”

MetsMagic
3 years 8 months ago

“When you raise your payroll, you’ve got to do it smartly, because if you don’t, you are losing 90 games at a higher payroll.” 
In short, the Marlins will be losing 90 games at a higher payroll. 

NYBravosFan10
3 years 8 months ago

Whether or not the Nationals contend remains to be seen. I have a hard time believing they seriously will because all of the pieces they have gotten together in order to make a good team always seem to be on the trade block. I’ve seen Ian Desmond, John Lannan, Drew Storen and Tyler Clippard in trade rumors a multitude of times. I do however think that the days of them being basement dwellers are over but if the Braves and Phillies play like they are supposed to then the Nats will have a pretty tough time of it and continue to be the Blue Jays of the NL; a solid team that’s in a tough division

kräftig. entschieden
3 years 8 months ago

Drew Storen was never on the block. He was being discussed as compensation for Denard Span.

Beatofficer
3 years 8 months ago

Are you a stand up comedian Nelson?

LUWahooNatFan
3 years 8 months ago

I don’t think the Nationals could contend for the division even if they added a top of the rotation pitcher and a cf/lead off man to be completely honest, now wild card, that’s a different story, especially if an extra one is added.

Let’s not forget that Rizzo made a statement last year about wanting to get a top of the rotation pitcher last year in the winter meetings and who did the Nationals sign?

The only ‘top of the rotation’ starters available this off-season are CC and Wilson.. If the Nationals can sign CJ Wilson to a 5 year deal in the 75-80 million range and find a solid CF/lead off.. Crisp? Span? IDK, then I would consider it a solid off-season, if they can’t do either of those, then at the very least extend Zimmerman

hallwagner
3 years 8 months ago

2 words. mark beuhrle. i like him better than cc or wilson. we already have a # 1 in strasburg, jzimm is an excellent #2, and if we had buehrle as a #3 thats a pretty damn good rotation. remember, the white sox won the world series not long ago with buehrle as their #1 starter.

LUWahooNatFan
3 years 8 months ago

I have a feeling Buehrle ends up in St. Louis.. If the nationals can’t get CJ Wilson for 5 years in the 75-80 million dollar range, I wouldn’t be too upset at bringing in Buehrle or Oswalt

3 years 8 months ago

CJ Wilson is the most overrated “ace” in the game of baseball today. Without the run support the Rangers throw at him he would put up mediocre numbers. ERA can be much lower when you’re pitching with a 6 run lead  because you simply aren’t pitching with stress and you’re going deeper. The playoffs truly exposed Wilson for how mediocre he is. I can’t wait for another team to sign him and regret it.

vtadave
3 years 8 months ago

So they should re-sign Reyes and go after bums like Cabrera or Wilson? Not following.

Three years for Crisp?  Two for Harrison?

Crain isn’t a free agent.

C-Pat?

Ok, Omar, is this you?

3 years 8 months ago

Whoa! 3 mil for Patterson? Probably in line for a minor league deal.

xhausted_grad
3 years 8 months ago

nevermind…i liked your previous post better

3 years 8 months ago

Use grammar. Jesus. No wonder the United States is going down the pooper.

BTW- seems pretty likely that Dotel will resign with the Cardinals.

stl_cards16
3 years 8 months ago

You missed the best one. 3 mil for Patterson who is below replacement level.

MetsMagic
3 years 8 months ago

I say we give 2/18 to Julio Franco, have Frank Catalanotto bat cleanup. You say Ollie Perez was worth -0.3 WAR last year? 4/$36mm it is!

NickinIthaca
3 years 8 months ago

Based on the incoherent ranting, my guess is it is either Omar or Tony Bernazard….

3 years 8 months ago

Please stop with this Broxton talk.

NYBravosFan10
3 years 8 months ago

Dotel as a closer would be a gamble. Not too sure if the guy can still do it.

3 years 8 months ago

No…This is when you give Kirk N. the chance to play in the majors. 

notsureifsrs
3 years 8 months ago

8 comments in a row — including 2 separate double-posts and a triple-post — has got to be a record

disqus is your daddy

Lastings
3 years 8 months ago

I’m sorry, but you had me on the floor with “bull pin” that’s a new one for me.

MetsMagic
3 years 8 months ago

You lost me with “Murpury” and “Bull pin” but when I noticed you want “Meaja” to be a long reliever I realize you are a dolt even with perfect grammar. 

3 years 8 months ago

Please tell me you were drunk while typing this…

kräftig. entschieden
3 years 8 months ago

Mm. Yes, the iPad seems to be the problem here.

NYBravosFan10
3 years 8 months ago

does your iPad have a gremlin in it or something?

NickinIthaca
3 years 8 months ago

You also could have stopped when he listed Santana at the top of the rotation…  I wouldn’t consider Santana a pitcher, much less an ace until he makes a spring training start to say the least…

MetsMagic
3 years 8 months ago

Agreed. Santana could pitch very well next year, but he might not pitch at all, and the team needs an alternative. I could see them giving minor league contracts to guys like Dontrelle Willis or Rich Harden. 

xhausted_grad
3 years 8 months ago

was there more to that sentence?

xhausted_grad
3 years 8 months ago

dude, i think your keyboard has tourette’s