I was told on Monday - off-the-record - that the Nationals were interested in signing Adam Dunn to a contract extension.
Now that it's out there, I'll quote someone who's pretty close to Adam who told me that Dunn's preference is to play baseball, not play bat.
"Adam really doesn't want to DH in the American League. He wants to play the field, and believes his first base defense has reached the adequate level. He knows he's no Gold Glover, but believes that he'll get better, and is anxious to improve that aspect of his game."
If you've been through the Nats' clubhouse, it's pretty clear that Dunn's a one-for-all, all-for-one kind of guy. His teammates love him. If he's determined to play in the field - and he's still in his prime - then he's got to play in the National League. In another story he described the extension talks as being at the zero stage, and inasmuch as they've just started, that's a fair assessment.
The other bit of interesting news is the signing of Miguel Batista to a minor league contract. Batista is no kid - he'll turn 39 in 3 weeks - but he's coming off of an effective year in the Seattle bullpen. He's below .500 for his career, both starting and relieving, and has been in the organization before, originally signing wth the Expos in 1988, and pitching in Montreal 1998-2000. He made $9.5 million with the M's last year, so a minor league deal is quite a step down. He pitched for Jim Riggleman in Seattle in 2008, and knows Mike Rizzo from his time with Arizona, so perhaps those connections played some role in today's signing.
Batista is a also true renaissance man, having published a book of poetry ("Feelings in Black & White") and a novel ("The Avenger of Blood"), in additon to his accomplishments on the mound.