FEBRUARY 16: The mutual option is valued at $5MM, SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo tweets. Lind can also earn up to $1.125M in incentives, Jon Heyman of Fan Rag adds on Twitter. That includes $150K if he plays in 80 games, $200K each upon reaching 90 and 100 games; $250K for hitting 110 and then 120 appearances; and another $200K if he logs his 130th contest.
FEBRUARY 13: The Nationals have struck a one-year deal with first baseman Adam Lind that includes a mutual option for a second season, the team announced on Wednesday, confirming previous reports.
Lind, a client of ISE Baseball, will reportedly be guaranteed $1.5MM. That comes in the form of a $1MM salary for the 2017 season and a $500K buyout on the 2018 option.
Entering the winter, Washington faced questions regarding the composition of its bench, and the quality of the reserve unit has remained in question as the offseason draws to a close. Lind himself is hardly a sure thing after a down season, though he surely wouldn’t otherwise have been available at such an affordable rate. As Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post notes (on Twitter), the organization’s trio of bench additions — Lind, Stephen Drew, and Chris Heisey (the latter two re-signed) — will cost just a shade more than what would have been owed to the traded-away Danny Espinosa, who no longer had a path to regular at-bats in D.C.
Lind still showed plenty of pop last year with the Mariners, driving twenty home runs in 430 plate appearances and posting a .192 isolated slugging mark. But the 33-year-old slashed just .239/.286/.431 as he swung more often and made less contact than he had in recent years. Lind’s 6.0% walk rate was his lowest since 2011, and his 20.7% strikeout mark was his worst since 2010. There was likely some misfortune in his .259 batting average on balls in play, though Lind also made more soft contact (19.7%) than ever before.
Clearly, the Nats will be hoping for a bounceback, though the club isn’t staking much on the possibility. If things break right, Lind could well represent a bargain. Over the three preceding campaigns, he slashed a robust .291/.364/.478 while contributing 49 long balls over 1,411 plate appearances. Even at his best, there are limitations. Lind is dreadful historically against left-handed pitching, though he has tuned up opposing righties with a lifetime .287/.347/.502 batting line.
That platoon split likely won’t trouble the Nationals, who will surely plan to utilize Lind as a late-inning bench bat and complement to right-handed-hitting first baseman Ryan Zimmerman. He’ll also function as an emergency plan if Zimmerman’s frequent injury issues arise. It seems that Lind will more or less step into the role that Clint Robinson has occupied over the past two seasons. Robinson struggled quite a bit in 2017, slashing just .235/.305/.332 in part-time play, and seems likely to lose his roster spot at some point (if not when this signing is announced) as he’s out of options.
While Washington likely would have preferred to sign a lefty bat that was also a viable option in the outfield, it seems the organization wasn’t quite willing to spend what was needed to do so. The club reportedly checked in on Brandon Moss before he landed with the Royals, though he signed for $12MM over two years. Lind does have some experience on the grass, but it’s been six full seasons since he roamed left field with the Blue Jays, and he never graded out as a quality defender there. Now 33 years of age, Lind seems like a stretch to spell the right-handed-hitting Jayson Werth in left for any significant amount of time, though he could theoretically draw an occasional start in place of Werth against right-handed pitching or in the event of an injury.
The Nats figure to have alternative alignments available when they elect to rest Zimmerman and/or Werth. Michael Taylor and Brian Goodwin will both compete for reserve outfield roles, and either could bump Adam Eaton to left field on occasion. Likewise, the righty hitting Heisey could give Werth some off days. But if the Nats really want to load up on power, left-handed bats, they’ll also at least have the option of fielding Lind in the corner, playing Drew at second, and bumping Daniel Murphy to first in place of Zimmerman.
Jim Bowden of ESPN and MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM first reported a deal was close (via Twitter). FanRag’s Jon Heyman tweeted that a deal was in place, pending a physical. FOX’s Ken Rosenthal tweeted the years, while Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post reported the money and option-year detail (Twitter links).
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.
Has to be a minor league deal.
Maybe or MLB deal never know
i would think so, but they really do need bench depth, i think its possible its a MLB deal for like 3 million?
Doesn’t have to be. Lind didn’t have a good year in 2016 but over his career he isn’t bad
Linds down season is better than Smokes best, this deal will show how stupid that Smoke resigning was.
Who is Smoke?.
I’m assuming he means Smoak on the Blue Jays.
Yeah I meant Smoak, wow not even auto correct. I need baseball to start.
Smoke and mirrors?
Don’t forget about the LoMo deal TB gave out at 2.5m. Lind, with a down year was far better than what Morrison could project out at and Tampa usually tries to wait out the market.. Except 1b for some reason, where they throw away money.. Like on James loney before him.
And Casey Kotchman before him.
I know you like to take shots at the Rays, but LoMo was better than Lind last season and is 4 years younger. Hardly seems like such an egregious error in judgement taking the significantly younger player coming off of the better season.
Seems like a great move. He was very good in 2013, 2014 and 2015. And a little worse than average MLBer in 2016 (but way better than Ryan Zimmerman). I find it very likely he makes the team and is a major contributor, so a 2-4m MLB deal is just fine. Could be huge pickup for Nats.
He was awful last year. At the plate and in the field. You are dreaming about him being any type of contributor unless he has a huge comeback. He was frustrating to watch all season.
Even when he hit a walk off home run?
Let’s wait and see how much is deferred.
Lol, this is great.
why not try him as closer. Nationals have no shutdown reliable reliever
Lind is the new Eric Hinske. Good deal.
Except Hinskes teams always made the playoffs
Much better bat than Robinson, this is a good upgrade.
Club option makes giving him a Major League deal worth it. Could have a bounce back year and is clearly an upgrade over Robinson.
I think we can all agree… the nationals have the biggest bandwagon fan base on the planet. I have yet to met a true nationals fan.
And not “rain on your wedding day”, Alanis Morrissette “ironic”, either… real, actual irony going on here.
I think “A Braves fan calling another team’s fan base ‘bandwagon'” would have been hard for Alanis to rhyme with…
I guess it takes a bandwagon to sell out playoff games
There may be some out there, but I have yet to meet a realistic Braves fan.
Hey there, my name Is Richard, and I am a life-long Braves fanatic…Now, you have met ONE realistic Braves fan…
Atleast now you can say you met one, but I do wish you a heck of luck trying to find more than one real Atlanta Falcons fan….Talk about a needle in a haystack…That’s more like a piece of hay in a needle stack…lol…Better yet, you might be better off Finding Bigfoot…lol..I mean, at least there is some evidence that Bigfoot exists…I have yet to find proof more than one or two real fans of the Falcons exists…
Baseball is generational, their following will build. It takes something to get people to go find the bandwagon though and that something is winning. Win a ring and you’ll have bought yourself thousands of life long fans. At least their organization is trending upward unlike the dump in Tampa
Ever been to DC or Northern VA? If yes, did you talk to anyone there?
Heck no. Try living in the Bay Area during a warriors postseason game
Can it, troll. There are many of us. Perhaps you have never been to Northern Virginia.
Have you been to DC? There are plenty.
Lol… Bravesfan calling out another teams fan base? That’s hilarious
Said the guy whose team couldn’t sell out playoff games.
Come on man…Was that really necessary?? It is Braves’ fans like yourself that give US fans of the Braves a bad name!!
The Nationals group of fans, and their loyalty or lack thereof is completely irrelevant!! Besides that, we Braves fans have ABSOLUTELY ZERO room to talk about that particular topic. Atlanta sports fans are notorious for being bandwagoners, and for a point of emphasis…LOOK NO FURTHER THAN this past SUPER BOWL!!!
We had supposed “life-long Falcons fans” all coming out of the woodwork.. Like a bunch of greedy, salivating random cousins and relatives after someone in their family hitting the lottery!!!…
Again, Come’On Man…not cool, not cool at all..
Random interesting fact, should he somehow end up in the minors with this deal: When Lind was coming up with Toronto, he was a fan favorite in Syracuse when they were the Jays AAA affiliate. Coincidentally, his last year in Syracuse was also their last year with Toronto, and they’ve been the Nats AAA affiliate since ’09. While I’d love to see him in the majors, he could end up coming full circle here.
@cmd85 Do you honestly believe they’re signing a guy with his career stats to a AAA deal.
Not at all, just noting the coincidence if he did somehow end up there, for whatever reason.
This might be the first move I’ve liked from the Nats this winter.
For whatever reason, they’ve kept pretending for years that Zimmerman is going to become his 2009 version again one day.
Lind is a pretty decent insurance policy.
Well they have to pay Zimmerman so they have to be hopeful
What a bargain at $1M. Could be the steal of the off-season signings. If they use him correctly, only against right handed pitching, he will crush for the Nats. As a Jays fan this only saddens me even more that we’re stuck with Smoak at $4M per season for the next two years. I’m so tired of Shapiro already!
The M’s thought the same thing, and look at how that ended up
Lol You guys are going to be like the Astros all excited about Aoki. You are going to be very disappointed not long into the season. He will have to have a huge turn around to be close to what you guys are taking about. I have no clue why he wasn’t DFA’d mid season and find anyone to fill his spot. They should have given Lee more ABs.
Or you know, he could be the next Beltre, it’s just the Mariner way. Even though Beltre was at least ok during his time, Lind was terrible.
@whereslou Aoki will do fine as an Astro. You will eat your words.
How does a guy just magically get his speed back? Unless you want Nori to be your DH, he’s finished.
Agree, he will fit nicely in that lineup.
I’m am a true Nationals fan -came over from Expos days- live and breathe baseball
Great deal at that price! He will have a nice year for the Nats.
Clint Robinson struggled in 2017? These guys can tell the future!!!
lol was about to post the same thing
Really nice pick up for the price, good job Rizzo.
Blue light special. Keeping their powder dry for the Robertson trade.
Had a good year in japan last year may be a good pickup. Im still surprised colorado let him go. He may not be a good catcher but he sure can hit.
I think your on the wrong article.
Some say Adam Lind doesn’t get rave reviews in the outfield
I remember last year when Lind was interviewed on MLB Radio right after he landed in Seattle, and he clearly was not thrilled to be there. I don’t know how he feels about DC, but his down year in ’16 may have been due in part to his not wanting to be there.
Trumbo came off a Mariners year and did quite well. Repeat?
Surely they’d be better off with Drew in LF than Lind?? Even though Drew has never played OF, Lind was ghastly in the OF all those years ago and I doubt the long layoff has made him a better OF. I’d prefer to see Lind at first, Murph at second and Drew in left. Werth is a butcher as it is so Nats fans should be used to seeing bad LF defense on a daily basis.
Everyone MUST WATCH THIS VIDEO!! It is hilarious, and features Greg Maddux in a disguise playing a prank on Kris Bryant!! Bryant’s reaction during the prank is absolutely PRICELESS!!! A TRUE MUST SEE FOR ANY BASEBALL FAN, especially old Braves fans and any current Cubs fans!!
Is it true Adam Lind is Jose Lind’s brother? Even though they look absolutely nothing alike, are different races, and there’s probably about a 20 or 25 year age gap? Pretty good chance.