Nationals Notes: Johnson, LaRoche, Second Base

Some links pertaining to the reigning National League East champions…

  • The Nats and manager Davey Johnson continue to work toward a new contract for 2013, writes Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post. Johnson is under contract through 2014 as a special advisor to the team, and his contract language and salary need to be reworked if he is to manage once again.
  • Johnson tells Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports that he wants to manage again in 2013, and GM Mike Rizzo says he wants Johnson back in the position as well.
  • The team is not close to a new contract with Adam LaRoche, writes MLB.com's Bill Ladson. There is still mutual interest from both parties. The Nats made a qualifying offer to LaRoche, and he has until Friday to decline it. That outcome, of course, is all but a foregone conclusion. If the team fails to sign LaRoche, Michael Morse will likely man the position next season.
  • In that same piece, Ladson also notes that the team views Ian Desmond, Danny Espinosa and Steve Lombardozzi all as starting middle infielders. That evidence is supported by the fact that Ladson's source tells him the team is still in pursuit of a backup middle infielder despite the trio's presence. It seems implied that one of the three could be on the trading block this offseason, though that's just my speculation.
  • Lastly in his piece, Ladson notes that the Nats re-signed minor league outfielders Chris Rahl and Jimmy Van Ostrand to minor league contracts. Rahl, 28, hit .291/.339/.467 in 92 games for Double-A Harrisburg. Van Ostrand, 27, batted .310/.370/.465 in 80 games for Harrisburg after being picked up from the independent league Sugar Land Skeeters.

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