The Nationals and utility man Ehire Adrianza are in agreement on a one-year, $1.5MM deal, pending a physical, per Daniel Álvarez-Montes of El Extra Base (via Twitter). Jesse Dougherty of the Washington Post confirms the deal (via Twitter), adding that there will be incentives tied to the contract to potentially increase the sum total.
Adrianza joins an increasingly robust collection of journeyman utility players in Washington. The 32-year-old switch hitter and Cesar Hernandez are the two vets who have secured guaranteed money, along with Alcides Escobar, the incumbent starter at shortstop. Adrianza’s contract doesn’t make him a starter in Washington, but it does presume he will be on the roster on Opening Day. And for what it’s worth, Escobar signed for less money and he’s looking like a multi-year starter for manager Davey Martinez’s club.
What’s more, though the Nationals haven’t exactly set the world on fire with their free-agent signings, but when it comes to veteran infielders, they’ve gone the quantity-over-quality route. Beyond the trio mentioned above, speeders Dee Strange-Gordon and Lucius Fox are also in-house with an opportunity to make the team. Richard Urena, Maikel Franco, Adrian Sanchez, Jake Noll, and Andrew Young are among the other veteran darts that they’ve thrown at the roster board this winter.
The question for Washington is how many roster spots exactly are available for the taking? More specifically, how secure are the active roster spots currently held by Carter Kieboom and Luis Garcia? Most of the veteran build-up can be attributed to the Nationals’ lack of minor league depth, but at a certain point, one has to wonder about the confidence level leadership has for their young infield duo.
Jesse Dougherty of the Washington Post suggests that the Nats may want to see Garcia spend time at shortstop, moving Escobar to the bench. That certainly makes sense if he’s going to stay on the Major League roster. It’s hard to imagine how either player or team benefits from Garcia coming off the bench.
Presumably, that’s where Adrianza steps in. The versatile defender can play anywhere on the field, giving the Nationals some flexibility with their roster construction. Martinez tends to ride his starters offensively, but having Adrianza on the bench might even allow Washington to ride with a short bench at times. With just a $1.5MM commitment, it’s also not impossible that Washington moves on from Adrianza if he’s not performing as expected. The payroll isn’t yet close to where it’s been in years past, so this might just be an example of Washington throwing some money at a problem to make up for the lack of some organizational depth at the top.
Glad he caught on with another club.
What I like most about Ehire Adrianza is he took the time to become a United States citizen. Kudos to him for doing that!
FredMcGriff for the HOF
What I like most about Ehire Adrianza is that he put in the hard work and took the time to become a United States citizen.
Don’t mock me Fred. Thanks.
Curly Was The Smart Stooge
The operative phrase here is “he put in the hard work”
US citizenship has become a little too easy lately.
Dude was solid for the Bravos last year. Had some big hits when they needed it.
Curly Was The Smart Stooge
He hit .250 as a PH (16 hits, 12 RBI) and a .342 hitter with RISP for the Braves in 2021. A definite clutch hitter & an excellent economical pick up for the Nationals.
Nats Owners & Rizzo keep piling on journeymen loads to the team – it’s a bust again!
Predict last or next in NL East
I know the Nationals are rebuilding but this is a decent pickup.
The Baseball Fan (Doesn’t like the Cubs)
This is the type of rebuilding pickup
I’m concerned that the Nats are over-loading on utility player types, but it’s heartening to see the apparently warm regards other posters have for Ehire.
Also, Rizzo has a good track record overall at picking up decent players who were relatively obscure to me beforehand.
Adrianna could have been a decent stopgap for the Yankees. But Cashman continues to miss out on thrifty choices.