JAN. 13: Dozier has passed his physical, making his one-year, $9MM deal official, Jesse Dougherty of the Washington Post tweets.
JAN. 10: An aggressive offseason for the Nationals continued Thursday, as the team reportedly agreed to a one-year contract with free-agent second baseman Brian Dozier. The All Bases Covered Sports Management client will reportedly receive a $9MM guarantee.
Dozier, 31, was one of the game’s premier second basemen from 2014-17, hitting a combined .254/.338/.476 with 127 home runs, 137 doubles, 14 triples, 67 stolen bases and a Gold Glove Award all under his belt in that time. He suffered a bone bruise in his knee early in the 2018 campaign but played through the injury, which may have impacted him at the plate; in 632 PAs split between the Twins and Dodgers last season, Dozier hit just .215/.305/.391 — including an especially anemic .182/.300/.350 slash with the Dodgers following a July 31 trade.
Washington represents something of a perfect fit for Dozier — a contending club that can offer everyday at-bats given the wide-open nature of their current second base situation. Prior to the agreement with Dozier, light-hitting Wilmer Difo and veteran Howie Kendrick looked to be in line for the lion’s share of work at the position.
Now, with Dozier in the fold, they’ll presumably revert to reserve roles for a Nationals club that has been aggressive in addressing weaknesses this offseason. Additionally, the Nationals needn’t feel any pressure to rush top prospect and presumptive long-term second baseman Carter Kieboom to the Majors. At the same time, the one-year term of today’s agreement allows them to address the second-base need without placing a longer-term roadblock in Kieboom’s path to the big leagues. And Dozier, meanwhile, will have the opportunity to rebuild his stock after a down season in 2018 before returning to the open market next winter. From that vantage point, it’s very much a win-win scenario for both the organization and Dozier himself.
If he’s able to bounce back to his previous levels of production, or even something close to it, he’ll provide the Nationals with a substantial upgrade over their incumbent options and deepen a lineup that has also added both Kurt Suzuki (a former teammate of Dozier’s) and Yan Gomes as options behind the plate. Washington has also signed the market’s best starter, Patrick Corbin, in addition to picking up righty Anibal Sanchez and adding relievers Trevor Rosenthal and Kyle Barraclough in what has been an exceptionally active offseason. The Nats reportedly haven’t entirely ruled out a reunion with Bryce Harper, either, so there could yet be some significant moves in the offing.
The addition of Dozier at a $9MM rate brings the Nationals ever closer to the $206MM luxury tax threshold, though as Jason Martinez projects at Roster Resource, the Nats are still about $3.5MM shy of that mark. Obviously, bringing Harper back into the fray would mean completely shattering that mark, though ownership likely views Harper as an exception and will ultimately make a determination on whether it’s worth incurring that penalty in order to retain the franchise icon.
Dozier entered free agency as a classic candidate to take a one-year “pillow” contract in an effort to restore his damaged stock, and the fit with the Nationals has long seemed a good one (as MLBTR noted when predicting that Dozier would land with the Nats on a one-year, $10MM deal at the outset of free agency). Now, with the Nationals just narrowly shy of the luxury threshold, he looks to be perhaps the final significant piece of the puzzle in D.C., barring a late push from ownership to re-sign Harper. The Nats have enough wiggle room that they could potentially add a particularly affordable reliever or bench piece if there’s a desirable veteran lingering on the market into Spring Training, but the team certainly can’t be keen on breaching the luxury tax barrier in order to add a complimentary piece.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic first reported that the two sides were close to a deal (via Twitter), and Jeff Passan of ESPN tweeted the agreement and terms of the contract.
1 year deal probably
Hearing Harper first year of deal to be signed sunday. is 12 million then next five at 20 million. yr 7 thru 10 40 million with a 50 million bonus in 2030
Where did you hear this? I’d be interested in reading that
Big if true, but that sounds like a horrible deal for Harper. First 5 years well below market value.
Where was this reported?
I think he’s just making fun of the Nationals and their recent history of deferring money.
You’re right. There really should be more strictness in rules regarding deferred money.
Yes!!! very good upgrade and bridge gap for the future.
Good signing. He’s still got stuff left in the tank.
He can’t catchup to the fastball anymore.
Weird to think that his K rate didn’t change and his exit velocity went up in a year where he couldn’t catch up to the fastball
Kieboom needs a bit more time in the minors I guess…
Until September would be my guess. Unless they wait until May of next year to get that extra year.
Good contract for Washington and may even be an overall upgrade over Murphy.
No not an upgrade to Murphy in any way. The benefit of Dozier over Murphy is a 1 year deal. Signing Murphy actually makes more sense for the short term, but in the long term they would be paying for the decline and blocking Kieboom who will be knocking on the door in a year or two.
Brian Dozier is a better defender than Murphy, by a good bit.
You could also argue he has better power than Murph..
As a second baseman, Dozier very well could be an improvement over Murphy, even if he doesn’t return to 2014-17 form. Murphy’s bat is obviously better, but that guy is a really, really bad defender at second base, whereas Dozier is at least average and will still provide power, walks, and some speed.
You did watch Murphy play defense, right? Good move for Nationals and should slot nicely into that lineup. This team is going to lead the league in steals and maybe runs scored. Outside of Zimmerman, they can all pedal.
Nats should get rid of Zimmerman. His contract is really bad for them. I am sure if they sweeten the pot some American League tram would take him for his bat at DH and 1st base. Zimmerman is ideal for the AL.
Can be flipped to a contender when the nats fall out of contention
Ha ha….love the “when”. Like death and taxes it’s inevitable that the Nats will not live up to their potential.
The Adrian Beltre
*sent by waiver to a contender. I kid(kind of)
It hasn’t been reported by MLBTR, but the Braves won their grievance vs. Carter Stewart, and will keep their draft pick.
Super relevant to an article about a free agent signing with Washington…
It just came out, and this is the most recent post. Not like anyone still is going to be perusing the comment section of the relevant article because it was days ago. So this is the only way to get it out there that people would see.
Doesn’t look like this is the year for Barry Bonds to get into the hall.
Thanks for the information!
you’re welcome. and despite trolls like khopper, who contribute nothing to the site
So you don’t mind if I go over to the Braves grievance article (that’s now on MLBTR) and post news that Nats pitcher Joe Ross reached arbitration today?
i dont care about you, so no
That randy Johnson sure had a big unit.
Damnit. Strong bounce back candidate. I’d rather them have him the DJ or lowrie though.
Yes, but I think they really wanted someone for only one year, and DJ and Lowrie are holding out for multiple years.
Brewers will ink Lowrie. Addressing their only 2 weakness with +defending switch hitters.
I doubt they sign anyone else of consequence after inking Grandal to play Catcher.
Watch the Brewers and Phillies. Franco fits, especially since the Phillies are only bidding against themselves for Machado.
I am interested in this, tell me more please. Is he the high school pitcher with a crazy good spin rate with an elbow issue?
His physical with the Braves showed a wrist injury and they offered him way less than he would’ve signed for, and the offer was below the minimum amount that could’ve been offered, according to reports.
MLBTR hasn’t reported it yet but Wednesday Braves outlets reported they cut ties with scouting director Brian Bridges and scout Roy Clark. Odd timing considering results, if any, from the Carter Stewart grievance has not been released. Are these moves real
…Related* to it? Coppy was forced to resign before MLB announced sanctions on ATL. (Mobile doesn’t allow edits)
Great pickup by the Nats. Other teams should be kicking themselves for not signing him. Yes, he had a bad year last year. But his upside is tremendous, and I think he will thrive in Washington. He seems to be a good teammate, and plays the game passionately.
“Upside” going into his age 32 season? Average and contact rate are dropping and his long balls come in bunches. Players rarely get healthier and more productive as they age and he moves into a division that will face Mets, Braves and Phillies’ starting pitching, learning a new league (I know, interleague blah blah) and having a pitcher in his own lineup instead of facing the AL Central starters. .235/21/78 is about what I expect. Losing Harper, Ramos, Zimmerman a year older and two outfielders who could drop a bit isn’t going to be the same. Hitting behind Turner will be a lot better than anyone in Minnesota though. It’s a good move, but expect slightly less than career average numbers simply based on normal bat speed drop off as he ages and seeing much better pitching.
Big fan of this signing
Yes! Got my 4th prediction right.
Just about where I expected him. Anywhere in that $8-10M range. Really hoping Dozier can bounce back. The guy seems to be a great team mate and somebody who has a lot of fun playing the game. Love watching the video where Dozier gets caught stealing twice by Yan Gomes, haha.
Good signing. Dozier is a good clubhouse guy who should loosen up the Nats. They are way too buttoned up. He’s a good defender, has power, can get on hot streaks, and is a good ballplayer. Altogether, a solid addition. Nats have been targeting him. In Rizzo we trust.
I truly hate the “good clubhouse” guy reason for signing someone.
That’s not the reason they signed him. That’s my opinion. Always liked his play and I’ve seen him a lot.
I know, but I hear that a lot about players.
I feel you daved. It’s a nice bonus, every team needs one, but I’m sick of hearing “he’s a good clubhouse guy.” At some point I want to hear about his performance, not his attitude.
A little more than I expected that Dozier would get on a “prove-it” one-year contract, but it could still be a bargain for the Nats if Brian returns to form. Good luck to him. I’ve always enjoyed watching him play.
I was hoping he’d head to the Rockies and boost the homerun numbers
If Harper comes back they are the favorites in the NL.
Vegas is already putting them at winning the division even without Harper. They are favorites every year for a 1st Rd exit.
I doubt he does, but I think it’s possible they still end up the favorites. It’s going to be a competitive division, but the Braves, Mets, and Phillies all have holes on their rosters still and no team is a clear-cut front-runner. Personally, I’d pick the Braves right now, but I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Nationals take the division.
They’ll have Robles and Soto for the entire year (and potentially Kieboom later in the year), added Dozier and solidified the catching situation. IMHO, their offense will be right up there with Atlanta as the best in the division, even without Harper and Murphy (especially if Eaton can stay healthy). Adding Corbin gives them one of, if not the, best 1-2-3 in the league, too. I like the Sanchez signing, but I think they need another arm or two for depth considering the losses of Gio, Roark, and Hellickson. And while they still need to work on the bullpen, Barraclough is a nice addition, and relief pitching has been the major weakness for most teams in the division anyway.
keep spending that $ Nationals..
They must have stupid money
There’s a new saying in the tomes of baseball Wisdom that I have come to trust…
“Stupid money aint stupid until the end of the contract.”
I can point to several contracts that work both ways but here are some things to consider
> Players signed to record MM/year for long term deals often end up at the upper end of average salary for elite players by the end of the term of contract.
(One of the labor issues that will need to be addressed [much to MLPA’s chagrin] is the rate of salary inflation in MLB which is not sustainable]
> Some players bring more than just there offense and/or defensive production. They are glue players who are the necessary mental glue in the team psyche (See Jayson Werth)
> In cases of extreme youth for elite player, one has to factor the ceiling a player is projected to possess.
Many called the Bonds signing in SF as Stupid Money… But does anyone believe that SF fans or management EVER regretted that signing?
Hey 6er. My comment was tongue-n-check, directed at a Philly fan. You should get my sense of humor by now!
Oh I got the Humor LOL
That was just one of my annoying fact based tangents. aimed at those who did not see the tongue in your cheek”’
And the words “Stupid Money” have already been used by the Phillie FO
The Nats have used all of their Harper money. There is no way they can add another $30-40 million per year to their payroll after all of their additions so far.
I bet you many fake monies that Harper resigns.
They were paying Murphy $13.5MM last year so they’re actually saving money at 2B year to year. With the way Corbin’s contract is structured they basically swapped his salary for Gio’s for 2019.
Remember that Harper made $22MM last year. If the Nats re-signed him and traded Eaton they would basically be in the same salary position as 2018.
Next year, as Corbin’s contract ramps up, they have Zimmerman/Dozier/Kendrick coming off the books, which frees up $31MM.
Nothing that deferred payments can’t resolve. Lol.
Damn was hoping the Mets would’ve gotten him but it would’ve blocked Alonso lol. Even if Harper doesn’t resign with the Nats their still a very good team and that’s coming from a Mets fan lol.
He’s never played first, and is still a very solid defender up the middle. Offensively, he’s below-average at first, and even if he returns to 2014-2017 form, he’s not spectacular relative to the position. Not sure it would’ve been worth the money for the Mets to sign him if they were going to stick him at first.
Nats leaving no stone unturned this offseason.
Dozier is on a steep decline. I don’t think this will help Washington all that much.
He ranked last year but it was his only true bad year. 2019 will determine where he is going
You’re right. I was talking to someone high up in the organization that told me they didn’t offer him a multi-year deal last year because of his decline in defense. He had almost as many errors last season as the prior two years combined. I like Brian. Nicest guy and I wish him well, but he’s definitely on the decline.
Errors seem like a ridiculous way to measure decline. It’s not like Dozier got a case of the yips. Defensive decline in the middle infield is almost always about range.
Nobody was going to offer Dozier a multi-year deal because of probably 3 reasons:
1) The Twins were very wary of extending him for some unknown reason.
2) Peripherals suggesting his overemphasized seasonal splits might be related to him being one step away from falling off a cliff offensively.
3) Him falling off a cliff in performance last year.
It wasn’t concerns about defense, whatever “high up person” in whatever organization you were talking to said.
I agree, I mean how much defensive decline can someone experience at second base anyway? It’s basically a no risk deal for the nats, but there are better options out there that would have made them better
He couldn’t hold a spot in the dodger lineup and they gave him all the opportunity one could ask for.
The stove, the stove, the stove is on fire!!
Great for all sides. Nats get an upgrade no matter if Dozier bounces back or not and it’s a one year commitment so if he ranks he walks and Dozier has a chance to rebuild his value on a contending team
Nationals making serious moves, that’s for sure. I’m starting to peg them on the same level as the Dodgers now. That’s a very deep lineup they’ve got plus a really good rotation (again). If Rizzo can bring back Harper, then Washington is my new favorite for the NL pennant
LOL. dude they do this every year. They assemble the dream team then get swept in the first round.
Please actually watch Baseball, they have never been swept in the playoffs.
No way Harper comes back now! They have almost no room in payroll. They have already spend more than $55 million on next year’s roster, for five players I think. Nationals still lack Dodgers’ enviable depth at pitching.
Looks like Kieboom will need to wait
Dozier is a good defensive 2nd baseman with some power. However, he doesn’t run out grounders when he thinks he’ll be thrown out, (as a Twins fan have seen it a hundred times or more. I’ll never understand getting paid millions to play a game and then not giving it your all. But when Dozier’s bat gets hot, he’s a lot of fun to watch.
NOO. would have been perfect for Milwaukee.
The Nats are major contenders right now, and I don’t think they even need Harper. Dozier will pick up the power slack, and they currently have a great potential outfield with Soto, Eaton, Robles and Taylor.
Let’s not forget pitching and defense wins games more than one $30+ million player. Their defense is improved and they have a fantastic staff now.
They are good on paper but have never put anything together down the stretch and into the playoffs. They are always a first round sweep or lose in 4.
Actually they have never gotten swept in playoffs. It is usually game 5 heartbreak for us.
I’ve always liked Eaton. Hope he has a solid year and helps the Nats win. He’s the kind of player that gets the best non-award label there is.. a true “gamer”.
i don’t know that i’d be counting on him to pick up any power slack but wouldn’t be surprised to see him have a good year at the plate. definitely a slick glove.
It is funny, because the Twins fan above me sees a very different Dozier than I saw. Yeah, he may not always run out routine grounders. I don’t care. And it isn’t as bad as TwinsTrio makes it out to be. I saw him run out plenty, making close plays out of nothing.
I believe Dozier to be one of the ten hardest working players in baseball, especially on the field. He will do whatever it takes to win a game.
I know during the 2015-2018 seasons Dozier would privately get upset with some of the players at times, never making it a public spectacle, because he didn’t think some of the players trained properly, put in the pregame work, nor gave it their all on the field. Dozier does all that.
I hope he hits 30 homeruns, scored 100 runs, and knocks in 90 during 2019. Just be prepared for it to come in streaks. If he bounces back, this is a huge pickup.
You are right that he wants to win and can be critical of those without the same desire. However, with millions of kids watching these games each day, not running out every ground ball isn’t a good example of how the game’s played. I like Dozier a lot, just that one critique because he does it fairly often.
Fair enough Twins Trio. I think we both wish Dozier lots of success. He made some pretty bad teams watchable.
I don’t know, I’ve watched the vast majority of Dozier’s career and if he doesn’t run out grounders, then I don’t think hardly anyone in the league runs out grounders. He’s a grinder and, having seen him working crowds enough times, he’s a genuine dude.
really was hoping the Dodgers would bring him back. Think he’s going to have a good year for the Nats.
Man, the Phillies really need to make a splash. They’re just watching the division getting tougher and tougher.
Strong bounceback candidate.
Nice addition. Rizzo has had a good offseason. Nats looking very good for 2019, with or without Harper.
In the short time he was with the Dodgers, his offense was disappointing but he always played hard and was very solid on defense. He is a very good signing for a role player.
Why is Dozier’s obvious knee injury being questioned: You could see it early in the season . He started out on fire, then all of a sudden he wasn’t making plays he always made in the field, you could see him struggle to run at top speed and that his bat was lagging because his body was affected. It was foolish of Dozier to let the twins play him on a bone bruise. He should have demanded time off instead of trying to man up thru it.
Nobody wants to sit out on a free agent season.
Because it’s really fishy. Dozier was in a contract year and had every reason to want to disclose he was either playing through an injury or take a stint on the 15 day DL to get back to 100%.
Instead, Dozier did the one thing which had the potential of costing him tens of millions of dollars. He told nobody, played terrible at the plate, showed major range decline in the field, and utterly tanked his value. Once it was clear Dozier was not making a comeback, he blamed a knee injury nobody had ever heard about. Very, very convenient.
Your facts are wrong: The LA times reported that when they traded for Dozier, the twins had indeed told them dozier was playing injured , that he had a bone bruise that he had sustained early in the season.
Bill Shaikin Sep 08, 2018
“It’s been a struggle,” Dozier said. “I’ve had a knee issue since the beginning of the year.”
“In April, as a member of the Minnesota Twins, Dozier sustained a bone bruise on his right knee.”
Yeah, people like the drama, I guess. It was plainly evident to me… showed at the plate, showed running the bases, showed in the field. One of those injuries that wasn’t severe enough to feel like he couldn’t play, but wouldn’t get better without resting it for a while.
1-year deal. Could be huge for the Nats if Dozier bounces back. Good signing.
If he bounces back and Kieboom is closer than we think he could be that trade chip at the deadline that brings prospects or a need for the playoffs
He has a big swing and is not a big guy so his timing was off most of the year. Seems like a lot of hitters with his type of pull-heavy swing are doing worse with all the pitchers tossing 95mph and defensive shifts.
He feasted off the Royals that year he hit 42 homers, it was awesome to see and completely unexpected so even then, everyone was saying a massive regression would happen and it has. And to think they wanted Bellinger from the Dodgers for him.
I think it’s a good priced one year deal for Dozier. And the Nats are betting on something. . . Not too much. Just right… . . . I predict 10-12 homers. 65-70 RBIs… Just his transfer to the NL,
East, plus big home park…
Damn. I almost picked the Nationals for him but didn’t.
Kind of like when I almost won the Powerball but none of the numbers quite matched.
Would have been perfect for the Dodgers.
They tried him out last year and he was putrid. I’m sure if the Dodgers saw anything in him they would have resigned him.
Eaton, Turner, Rendon, Soto, Zimmerman, Dozier, Gomes, Robles? Or something like that? Pretty solid lineup, without Harper. No question they will miss Harper’s HR potential, but they’ve added offense at two positions (2B and C) where they got next to nothing last season.
I kinda like Robles between Zimm and Doze… although I could also see flipping Doze and Gomes.
When Kendrick gets a start we could see a really potent lineup
Speedy guy in front of the pitcher, so he’s easier to bunt over.
And CF too, considering Taylor’s performance and that he’ll be a sub in 2019.
Nats are gonna be scary good
I’m not convinced the their Manager can win, however.
They seem to be getting worse compared to the rest of the NL easy in my opinion. Minus the marlins who will always be bottom feeders.
Burp. Wrong article.