Rizzo On Center Field, First Base

Nationals GM Mike Rizzo joined Mike Ferrin on MLB Network Radio today; here are a few key comments.

On center field:

We see the 2013 free agent class at center field is much stronger than it is for the 2012 season.  With that in mind we know Jayson [Werth] can handle the center field position.  It's not a perfect world for us.  He's a good defender out there and is ready, willing, and able to take on the responsibility to play center field.  We recognize that we need a true gliding, defensive, rangy center fielder out there in a perfect world. As far as the 2012 season we're not going to make a kneejerk reaction and lock ourselves into anything long-term if it doesn't make sense for us.  

MLBTR's 2013 free agent list can be seen here.  Viable candidates for the Nationals could include Michael Bourn, B.J. Upton, and Shane Victorino, or perhaps Angel Pagan or Grady Sizemore if they have strong 2012 seasons.

On whether Rizzo will monitor the Prince Fielder situation:

Adam LaRoche is under contract for us, we're paying him a lot of money to play first base for us next year.  We feel that he's going to have a bounceback season.  We just want him to have his career norms: .265, 25, 85-100 RBIs and play great defense.  We feel that his shoulder is rehabbed, he's 100%, and talking to him just recently he feels great and he's ready to contribute to us in 2012.  As far as, are we going to dabble our toe in that water?  Those are decisions that we make early on in the process and we've more or less decided that Adam is going to be our first baseman unless something extraordinary, out of the ordinary happened, that's how we're going to go to Spring Training.


60 Responses to Rizzo On Center Field, First Base Leave a Reply

  1. NatsTown 4 years ago

    like what I hear. No kneejerk reactions like *cough Werth cough*. Who are the Centerfield free agents for next year?

  2. Paying Adam $8m for the final yr of his deal is not a reason to not go after Prince….Prince is a long term solution where as LaRoche is a short term gamble(him putting up his career numbers again)

    • hallwagner 4 years ago

      thing is after this year we can move morse back to first have werth in rf, harper in lf and sign one of the great free agent cf’s in 2013 class

      • Fair enough and makes sense to a point but that is if you believe that Morse didn’t just have a career year(which I believe)

        • hallwagner 4 years ago

          regardless i still think he should be good for at least a .280/20/90 line. i mean he has shown consistent power/average in his career, just finally got a lot of playing time last year

        • Guest 4 years ago

          I agree with Hallwagner..I don’t expect those near MVP numbers annually.  But I do think that the numbers he suggested are certainly reasonable

  3. Lunchbox45 4 years ago

    So who are the suitors for Prince.. Orioles & Seattle?

    • Rabbitov 4 years ago

      I think if the Dodgers can find a way to poney-up they’ll sign him.  Its been a hunch of mine for a while now.  

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

        Would be a logical fit. . I don’t know about the finances though..

        I’m surprised he hasn’t signed yet.

        • I didn’t think he’d sign til after the new year anyway….borASS works that way…..Werth was an exception b/c the Nats came w/ an offer he knew NO ONE would match…

      • That would take McCrook getting permission from MLB and the groups bidding on the team to ALL approve the increase to the payroll….

      • BVHjays 4 years ago

        I can see it now:

        Dodgers to Sign Prince Fielder

        Ken Rosenthal has the terms of the contract. $25 in 2011, $25M in 2012-2021)

    • Tony Matias 4 years ago

      I’m a Seattle fan, but still believe there’s a good chance he may still go to the Cubs.

      Hopefully it’s Seattle, but I’m not getting my hopes up.

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

         I really hope Seattle doesn’t sign him.. its a waste.. their division is stacked right now, best thing to do would be to accumulate top end prospects and strike in 2-3 years

    • Guest 4 years ago

      hmmmmm…..i just have this weird feeling about toronto i can’t get rid of

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

        If it was toronto I feel like it would have been done already

        • Guest 4 years ago

          that could be more of boras’ doing…that is the beauty of it we really don’t know

      • 12in12 4 years ago

        I feel like Toronto is treading water until Votto hits the market.

        • Guest 4 years ago

          that’s very valid………as we know jock-strap gets a little funky sometimes so we will see

        • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

          Votto is going to be older and more expensive

  4. wickedkevin 4 years ago

    Since the Nats probably won’t contend this year, though they can with Prince, waiting for next year’s CF class is a smart move instead of trading after the Gio trade.

    • Todd Boss 4 years ago

      You don’t think the Nats will contend?  Why do you say that?  If you look at the WAR additions of Gonzalez in the rotation, a full season of Strasburg, and healthy seasons from both Zimmerman and LaRoche, you can easily find another 11 wins.  That should put the team in 90 win territory.  If they add a one-year FA with a bat in RF (assuming we play Werth in CF) then suddenly this team could really be a contender.

      • Guest 4 years ago

        I agree.  Though as much as i hope/pray that happens, we can’t assume those all to go our way.  And we have to expect a regression from Morse at least to a degree (I love the dude but I dont expect near mvp numbers every year).  Who knows if Clip will be as dominant, same with Drew (whom happens to be one of my top 3 favorite nats).  Relievers can be unpredicatble.  So I obviously think the WAR added will be greater than lost, but for everything to go perfect would be extremely tough..
        and the fact that a lot of those wins came in september when teams either clinched or mailed it in can be a bit deceiving.

        but hey, im just playing devils advocate, LESSS GOOO NATS!

  5. Philip Marlowe 4 years ago

    I wish the Cubs would make a move for LaRoche or Morse. Or really any first baseman. I really don’t want to see Bryan LaHair at first next year.

    • elbeisbol 4 years ago

      If the Nats trade Morse they’d need to acquire another corner OF. 

  6. ironnat 4 years ago

    They aren’t going to the Series this year.  I wouldn’t give up anymore minor league pieces for a center fielder when we can pick up one next year as a free agent.  After LaRouche Morse can play first.  I think we should be done except for some bench help.

  7. touchmymonkey 4 years ago

    How about a Byrd for Laroche type deal? Mix in a few borderline prospects to even it out. Byrd is an decent placeholder in CF for nats and cubs get 1B for a year.

    • hallwagner 4 years ago

      as i stated we already had byrd, we dont want him again. why get an expensive (in terms of what we give up) placeholder for a year when we can just start bernadina. if 2013 is going to be our year, then theres no point in getting an expensive 1 year stopgap.

      • touchmymonkey 4 years ago

        so you would rather have werth in cf, harper in rf and laroche at 1B then Byrd in cf, werth in rf, and harper at 1B ( or harper in LF and morse at 1B) and have an extra 1.5MM to play with this year?.. and i don’t get the “as I stated” part -when did you state that? not in this thread. you going on the theory i follow all of your posts on all of the threads?

      • BlueCatuli 4 years ago

        I think you need to check his value compared to his actual contract. At 6.5 MM due in 2012 he is still a bargain.

        • hallwagner 4 years ago

          and by expensive i meant giving up laroche. it’s just an unnecessary trade

          • BlueCatuli 4 years ago

            LaRoche makes more than Byrd and doesn’t Morse play first? You aren’t making too much sense here. The Nationals would be saving money and getting better in the trade.

          • hallwagner 4 years ago

            not at all. byrd is not going to push us into the playoffs, and if he’s only gonna be with us for one year, whats the point? like i said just use whomever for 2012 and get a great CF in 2013

          • BlueCatuli 4 years ago

            I think you need to do a bit of research here.

          • hallwagner 4 years ago

            i think you need to realize that acquiring byrd would really be pointless.

          • BlueCatuli 4 years ago

            So you’d rather pay more for two guys who combined have a o WAR than pay less for two guys who have a combined 5.6 WAR. Pointless indeed…

  8. Lunchbox45 4 years ago

    Rajai Davis might be a fit

  9. pmc765 4 years ago

    Boras waits. Boras banks on at least one dumb owner. Boras client after Boras client remains unsigned.

    GM’s are adaptable creatures. They need, as Rizzo says, to make decisions and shape their teams, not be strung out by Boras.

    So one of these years, and it might be this year, a bunch of Boras clients are going to be harmed by their agent’s waiting game. Fielder will play baseball somewhere for somebody, but he might not like the term of the contract. And lesser clients, like EJax, will have waited and suffered four trades in less than two seasons for little to no payback.

  10. BlueCatuli 4 years ago

    Byrd could be a cheap on year stop gap. I don’t think the Cubs would be asking for a whole lot.

  11. Anthony 4 years ago

    Nice to see a Mike Ferrin mention at MLBTR, he’s my favorite host on MLB radio. His shows are always intelligent, he asks good questions, and he’s a sabermetrics pupil.

  12. padresfuture 4 years ago

    Venable to the Nationals for a relief pitcher.

  13. blu167 4 years ago

    lol, “Zimmerlan”

  14. Thomas W 4 years ago

    Better idea move Morse to first Werth to LF, sign Victorino, let Harper start in RF that is an excellent defensive and likely offensive OF

  15. Guest 4 years ago

    Why, on god’s green earth would we take the rest of the mets’ garbage???…….you must be on some good stuff….can i have some????

  16. Chris Whitby 4 years ago

    In this scenario, it would be Wright – not Zimmerman – moving to 1B.

  17. MetsMagic 4 years ago

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: please stop making suggestions. 

  18. Guest 4 years ago

    Wow i can’t wait to see our lineup when we have Zimmerman and Zimmerlan hitting back to back…with Zimmermann pitching

  19. Guest 4 years ago

    Wow i can’t wait to see our lineup when we have Zimmerman and Zimmerlan hitting back to back…with Zimmermann pitching

  20. Edgar4evar 4 years ago

    The M’s have no replacement for Gutierrez in their system. Robinson didn’t look like he could play center last season, and his hitting had a way to go as well.

  21. Lunchbox45 4 years ago

    Paying someone 75 million in 3 years to be non competitive is not a good investment.

  22. rikersbeard 4 years ago

    Will it really keep you competitive now?

  23. hallwagner 4 years ago

    i just don’t think it will be. stras will be on an innings limit and we don’t really have much to choose from in terms of CF’s this year in the FA market. 2013’s class is much better. you guys act as if marlon byrd is a significant upgrade over bernadina

  24. BlueCatuli 4 years ago

    He is. Do you ever look at WAR?

  25. hallwagner 4 years ago

    yea, a 0.9 difference in war isn’t really worth the effort of trading him. like i said before wait until 2013 and get bj upton who will most likely have a significantly higher WAR than byrd will. what you’re saying is basically the equivalent of saying that if we had cesar izturis we should replace him with ronny cedeno because he’s better. while with my suggestion we would be replacing him with a asdrubal cabrera in a year. if you didn’t know already, i was giving a hypothetical situation that helps explain my logic a bit better

  26. hallwagner 4 years ago

    i’m just saying 1 year of marlon byrd in place of roger bernadina will make almost no difference what so ever

  27. BlueCatuli 4 years ago

    Even a dirty hooker has standards.

  28. BlueCatuli 4 years ago

    Even a dirty hooker has standards.

  29. Guest 4 years ago

    If you want a lead-off hitter, find someone who can GET ON BASE.

  30. Guest 4 years ago

    Double Like

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