Compared to what they did last season, the Nationals may stand to gain the most from their returning players, writes August Fagerstrom of FanGraphs. We all pay attention to the big moves of the offseason – such as the Mets’ signing of Yoenis Cespedes. It’s easy to forget that player performance is not constant. Using projected WAR, Fagerstrom finds the Nationals could gain about seven wins just from 2015 returnees. In particular, Anthony Rendon, Stephen Strasburg, and Jayson Werth are projected for rebound campaigns.
Here’s more from the NL East:
- The Phillies are on the hunt for late opportunities, writes Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. GM Matt Klentak said, “every year, it turns out that somebody who we thought was going to sign early and they don’t, they hold out and there’s a deal to be done…if there’s an opportunity out there, we’re going to push forward.” Klentak is comfortable with the team’s current depth, so there’s no guarantee the club with sign or trade for any additional talent before the start of the season.
- Phillies left-handed starter Matt Harrison is still experiencing an ongoing back injury, per Zolecki. Harrison is unlikely to be ready for the start of Spring Training and may not pitch anytime in the near future. The club acquired Harrison as part of the Cole Hamels trade as a means to balance salary. For now, he’s a lottery ticket for the Phillies if he can ever return to health. At some point, the club may decide they value the 40-man roster spot more (this is less of an issue in-season if he’s on the 60-day DL).
- Freddie Freeman thinks the Braves will return to relevance soon, writes David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Freeman is the last man standing from the 2013 roster, marking a surprisingly quick overhaul for John Hart and company. Freeman is excited about the team’s mix of veteran and young talent. The Braves new SunTrust Park is scheduled to open in 2017, and the Braves would surely like to field a contender.
Freeman isn’t the only man standing from the 2013 roster. Teheran was there as well.
I dont know why they keep forgetting about him teheran
My guess is because he had a bad season last year.
But wow only 2 players remain from a team that won 96 games three years ago?!?!?
Teheran was on the Braves 2013 roster too
What did they expect to hear from Freeman as ticket selling season revs up? This year will have something to say about the speed of the rebuild.
Not the whole season, but definitely the latter half
Not to be a smart ass, but aren’t you kind of stating the obvious, Stymeedone?
The Nationals do have guys coming back but they lost a couple of guys as well. Still think they need to do something to get them over the Mets. Trading for Cargo or signing Gallardo seems like a couple of things they might be able to do.but wonder if they’ll actually do anything. Any rumors coming out of our nations capital?
So who’s looking better so far?
1) Granderson (RF)
2) Walker (2B)
3) Wright (3B)
4) Cespedes (CF)
5) Duda (1B)
6) Conforto (LF)
7) d’ Arnaud (C)
8) A. Cabrera (SS)
9) Harvey – deGrom – Syndergaard – Matz – Colon – Wheeler (when ready)
RP) Familia – Reed – Bastardo – Robles – Torres – Gilmartin – Goeddel – Verrett = Blevins
Bench) Lagares / Flores / De Aza / Plawecki / Tejada
1) Revere (CF)
2) Rendon (2B)
3) Harper (RF)
4) Zimmerman (1B)
5) Werth (LF)
6) Murphy (2B)
7) Ramos (C)
8) T. Turner (SS)
9) Scherzer – Strasburg – Gonzalez – Roark – J. Ross – A.J. Cole – (Giolito)
RP) Papelbon – Kelley – Treinen – O. Perez – Gott – Petit – Rivero – T. Hill – R. Martin
Bench) Taylor / Espinosa / Drew / Moore / Lobaton / C. Robinson
The Phillies bargain hunting should be fun. They have lots of money..
The most sure-thing reliever they have going into next year is Jeanmar Gomez, they could look at Clippard. Other buy low options could be Aaron Crow and Bobby Parnell,
I’d love for them to pick up Mike Minor as a buy-low as well.
As for a bigger splash, David Freese could be interesting. No team in desperate need of a 3B. Phillies pick him up to play 3B, move Franco to 1B and dump Howard.
They could also platoon Pedro Alvarez with Darin Ruf.
I agree on everything, I think Lincecum would be a good investment for them as well for the rotation or bullpen, experience arm at a low cost with high upside, I’d rather them not get Alvarez though because he’s essentially Howard
As long as Howard is in a true platoon, he’ll hit fine. No need for Alvarez,
If Rymer Liriano (DFA’d by Padres) hits waivers, Phillies should snatch him up.
Just 24 years old and batted .292 with 14 HR / 18 SB in 131 games in AAA
He also had a .383 OBP and a .460 SLG =(.843 OPS)
Werth is going to rebound, huh? Alrighty then. I guess the Nats were trying to sign Cespedes for nothing and the Werth trade rumors were just that. Will the next article mention how his contract is a good one too?
You can project the numbers forward all you want, but his game doesn’t (and hasn’t) aged well, and he has no in$entive to use anything that might “help” things out either.
It was a bad contract the day it was signed and everybody outside the Nats FO knew it. Now as it’s getting near the final years of the deal and he’s having a hard time staying on the field, and having a VERY difficult time living up to anything close to the contract, hope and crossed fingers won’t help.
I personally don’t have anything for or against the Nats, other than they share the same division as my team, and have no problem co-existing. That said, when I hear things like this, I’m gonna say something about it.
There’s a reason, and a VERY good one, that an increasing number of teams are gunshy about handing out long term deals. They are tired of paying the Crawford (LAD), Texeira (NYY), Sabathia (NYY), Aroid (NYY), Hamilton (LAA), Pujols (LAA), Bay (NYM), Wright (NYM), Howard (PHI), Harrison (PHI,TEX), Andrus (TEX), Choo (TEX), Kemp (LAD, SD), Upton (SD), Zimmerman (WAS), Verlander (DET), Cano (SEA), Tulo (COL, TOR), Lester (CHC), Porcello (BOS), Hanley (Boston), Sandoval (BOS), Bourne (ATL), Swisher (ATL), Fielder (DET/TEX), Ethier (LAD), Lincecum (SF), Hill (ARI), ….
For every one that works out, there are at least two that don’t. Those aren’t very good odds, and there’s a lot of money on the line.
Some teams have learned their lessons and aren’t giving them out very often, while others can’t seem to hand them out quickly enough. Then they are perennially strapped for cash and never have any flexibility to make the moves they need to, because they were too busy making the moves they wanted to instead.
Enjoy Werth. You’ve got him for two more years… Unless you can find someone else’s headache instead.
Teams know that most long term deals are simply, you’re paying the guy for a couple of seasons (lets say about a third to a half of the total contract length) for his normal production and the final few seasons you just hope for league average production. I would argue that the Cano, Verlander, Lester, Tex, Tulo and Lincecum’s first extension are decent signings. Verlander and Lincecum were arguably the best players in the game at the time of their signing, Lester was arguably the best pitcher available (and a proven pitcher) and Cano, Tulo and Tex were arguably some of the better players at their position at the time (maybe even best in Cano/Tulo’s case). In hindsight its easy to criticize bad contracts, but for some of those contracts, they were necessary at the time or the team would’ve been getting slammed by its fans.
I completely agree with you on these contracts. And as a Cubs fan, I knew we’d have to overpay for an ace. Lester’s 25.6 mil looks like a deal now with all the 30m/yr guys. Albeit Arrieta makes it look even better. And Lester still has his lather years of the deal to contend with. But with his experience and the way he actually “pitches” and doesn’t just throw will make this a tolerable even prosperous contract
The reason the Nat’s signed Werth to that contract was to let other players in the league know that they have money to spend and want to win! They knew that the last few years of his contract he would not be the player he was in the past. He’s the main reason they made the playoffs in 2012. When the Nat’s came here in 2005 they were a joke after MLB owners got rid of any of the Expo’s player that had any value! 7 years later they made the playoffs and a lot of that had to do with the Werth signing. I think it was a great signing that made the Nat’s a real MLB team!!!
100% correct. It was widely acknowledged at the time that Nats overpaid for Werth but also that they had to to establish relevance in FA market. Werth’s contract was a loss-leader, before the roster had Stras, Harp, Rendon, Gio, LaRoach, Span, not to mention Scherzer, Fister, etc. Werth helped the franchise build credibility and wins (from 100 loss seasons in 09-10) that followed and he’s been pretty productive if not a $21 mil/year guy. They will pay the price for next two years but it was worth it (no pun intended) and they have the cash to do it. Hasn’t slowed them from putting $$$ out there for new adds.