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Nats non-tender Lannan, Flores, Gorzelanny

The Nationals plan to cut ties with left-handed starter John Lannan, catcher Jesus Flores and left-handed reliever Tom Gorzelanny, a source confirmed, declining to tender those players a contract. Lannan was twice the Nationals’ opening day starter, Flores was once viewed as the team’s catcher of the future and Gorzelanny was a productive long reliever during the Nats’ 2012 playoff run. All three would be

Lannan’s future with Nats could be decided today

Sometime today, we’ll learn whether John Lannan still could have a future with the Nationals or whether the team will cut ties with its two-time opening day starter. The deadline for teams to tender contracts to their arbitration-eligible players is 11:59 p.m. tonight. The Nationals have 10 players up for arbitration, but only two are legitimate candidates to be non-tendered, which is a fancy term

Another look at the Span trade and the many options ahead

The Nationals could have easily gone out and dropped $75-85 million on a big-name free agent center fielder. Michael Bourn and B.J. Upton were both out there for the taking until Upton landed with the Braves two days ago, and signing either would have turned heads and qualified as a big splash. Instead of going in that direction and being on the hook for a

Rizzo discusses the Denard Span trade

Mike Rizzo has had his eye on Denard Span for quite a while now. The Nationals’ general manager scouted Span a decade ago back at Catholic High School in Tampa, Fla., followed him through the Twins’ organization and was close to pulling off a trade for Span two years ago. Today, Rizzo finally got his guy. The Nationals acquired Span from the Twins for right-handed

Nats acquire Denard Span from Twins for Alex Meyer (updated with Rizzo quick hits)

After a couple of years of searching, the Nationals have finally found their center fielder and leadoff hitter. The Nats have acquired Denard Span in a trade with the Twins in return for minor league right-handed pitcher Alex Meyer. Span, 28, hit .283 with four home runs, 41 RBIs and 17 stolen bases and a .342 on-base percentage in 128 games this season. He gives

Rizzo looking for “dynamic” center fielder, LaRoche talks not progressing far

When the Winter Meetings begin in Nashville in four days, Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo will sit in on dozens of meetings with agents and front office personnel from other teams, looking to upgrade his roster for the 2013 season and beyond. Speaking this afternoon on 106.7 the Fan, Rizzo revealed that one of his top goals during these sessions will be to add a

Looking at the remaining center field options

The Braves had a shot to re-sign Michael Bourn, who had spent the last season and a half in Atlanta. Instead they chose B.J. Upton, signing the former Tampa Bay Rays center fielder to a five-year, $75 million deal. Not sure what that says about Bourn as he looks to get a five-year deal in the neighborhood of $80-90 million. Upton certainly brings qualities that

Upton lands in the NL East

Scratch B.J. Upton off the list of free agent outfielders. And get ready to see him in the National League East for the next few years. The Braves have signed Upton to a five-year deal worth a shade over $75 million, according to multiple reports. That not only gives the Braves their center fielder and a middle-of-the-order bat, but it also pushes Michael Bourn out

Burnett’s price continues to rise

With every deal signed by a prominent free agent reliever, Sean Burnett’s price goes up a bit more. As a result, his chances of returning to the Nationals could be decreasing. The Reds have agreed to a three-year deal with right-hander Jonathan Broxton, a contract which will pay the hard-throwing reliever $21 million, according to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal. The deal also includes a $9

Phillies’ catcher suspended, Nats’ catcher healing

The Phillies had a rough 2012 season, but catcher Carlos Ruiz helped them fight through the tough patches, batting .325 and posting a .935 OPS, both career highs. He was arguably the Phillies’ top position player over the course of the season. This upcoming year, the Phillies will be without Ruiz for nearly the first month of the season. Major League Baseball has announced that

Spring training relocation looking less likely

At one point, it seemed likely that the Nationals would switch spring training locations after the 2013 season, with the team looking to relocate its minor league facilities from Viera, Fla., to Fort Myers. Apparently, the chances of that happening continue to decrease. According to a report in the News-Press (subscription required), Lee County Commissioner John Manning doesn’t seem optimistic about the Nats relocating to

Nats financially rewarded for playoff performance

Come playoff time, major leaguers aren’t thinking about money. They’re thinking about the World Series. They’re thinking about a ring. They’re thinking about what they can do to help their team make a run deep into the postseason. With that, however, comes money. The further your team advances in the postseason, the larger a monetary pool your team will receive from Major League Baseball, which

Waiting for the action to heat up

We’re getting close. After weeks of chatter but minimal action, the hot stove is finally getting ready to heat up. Things often develop slowly during the baseball offseason. Teams spend weeks kicking the tires on players, feeling out agents and determining where their priorities lie. Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, all the talk will start to get put into action. A week from

Stammen suddenly a major part of Nats’ bullpen

Throughout much of spring training last year, it appeared Craig Stammen was likely ticketed for the starting rotation at Triple-A Syracuse. The Nationals looked like they had a full bullpen at the major league level and Stammen was still viewed as a guy who could provide organizational depth as a starter. But thanks to a strong spring, Stammen ended up cracking the Nationals’ opening day

A few minor matters

I’ve awoken from my food-induced coma, and in a little bit, it’ll be time to go back for Round Two. Momma Kolko has given me plenty of leftovers to tackle, and I plan on doing just that this afternoon. Speaking of tackling, watching the Skins push the Cowboys around yesterday kind of put the finishing touches on a nice Thanksgiving. This Griffin guy is decent,

Things Nats fans should be thankful for

A very Happy Thanksgiving to everyone out there from northern Virginia to D.C. to Baltimore and beyond. Hope you all enjoy food, football and family today. This is my favorite holiday of the year for all those reasons. Nationals fans have a lot to be thankful for today beyond the three F’s above. They’ve got a team which is on the rise, a stable of

More on the roster additions, plus a look at Flores

In case you missed it, the Nationals made a couple of additions to their 40-man roster last night, selecting the contracts of right-handed pitchers Erik Davis and Nathan Karns. Both Davis (a reliever) and Karns (a starter) are now protected from the Rule 5 draft which will take place in a little over two weeks. Come spring, they’ll get to spend some time in big

Nationals add Davis, Karns to 40-man roster

The Nationals announced tonight that they have added right-handed pitchers Erik Davis and Nathan Karns to their 40-man roster. The moves protect the two players from the Rule 5 draft, which will be held on the final day of the Winter Meetings, on Dec. 6. Davis, 26, went 8-3 with five saves and a 2.71 ERA in 48 appearances between Double-A Harrisburg and Triple-A Syracuse

Rizzo named Executive of the Year (plus some 40-man discussion)

General manager Mike Rizzo’s Nationals made the playoffs for the first time in team history, posting the best record in the majors in the process. His team’s skipper won Manager of the Year. His teenage center fielder won Rookie of the Year. He had four players make the All-Star team, had three win Silver Sluggers and one win a Gold Glove. Now Rizzo has gotten

AFL season provides plenty to like for Nats fans

Not all that much went on in the baseball world over the weekend, but the last couple days were pretty eventful for Michael Morse. Morse and his fiancé Jessica got married on Saturday, tying the knot with a number of Morse’s Nationals teammates and manager Davey Johnson in attendance. Congrats to the happy couple. Morse tweeted out a number of pictures from the reception and

Riggleman’s name resurfaces (plus some notes)

How’s this for some surprising news: ESPN’s Buster Olney reports that the new-look Blue Jays are close to finally naming a manager. OK, that’s not the surprising news. Here’s the surprising news: According to Olney, two of the finalists are former Rockies manager Jim Tracy and former Nationals skipper Jim Riggleman. Yup, the same Jim Riggleman who many people thought would never have a shot

Nats release 2013 spring training schedule

Start planning your vacations, folks. The Nationals have released their full 32-game 2013 spring training schedule today, featuring 15 home games at Space Coast Stadium in Viera, Fla. The Nats open their Grapefruit League schedule against the Mets on Feb. 23 in Port St. Lucie and will wrap up spring training with a March 28 home game against the Mets. The first home game on

An idea of how big a deal Burnett could land

You know your team has probably put together a solid season when five different players receive votes in your league’s Most Valuable Player balloting. As I mentioned last night, first baseman Adam LaRoche, shortstop Ian Desmond, left-hander Gio Gonzalez, third baseman Ryan Zimmerman and center fielder Bryce Harper all found their way onto at least one National League MVP ballot. It was nice to see

Five Nationals receive MVP votes

Giants catcher Buster Posey claimed National League Most Valuable Player honors, getting 27 of the 32 first-place votes handed out. The 25-year-old Posey has had a decent year; he won the batting title, got himself a World Series ring and now has taken home the NL MVP award. The Nationals, meanwhile, were well-represented in the MVP voting. Five Nats received MVP votes. Adam LaRoche finished

A take on last night’s result and a minor signing

On Tuesday night, shortly after Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton expressed his frustration with the monster trade which shipped five of his teammates to the Blue Jays, Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper sent a tweet Stanton’s way. The message, which has since been deleted, read: “you can always come play for the Nats! We will take you anytime! Get some red, white, and blue in your

Gonzalez finishes third in NL Cy Young voting (updated)

The Nationals won’t go 3-for-3 in the major end-of-season awards. Bryce Harper won the National League Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year and Davey Johnson won the NL Manager of the Year, but Gio Gonzalez came up short in his bid for the NL Cy Young Award. That went to Mets starter R.A. Dickey, a 38-year-old knuckleballer who has taken the league by storm the

Nats set coaching staff, add Tarasco to coach first base (Thurman joins Nats)

The Nationals have announced that Tony Tarasco has been added to Davey Johnson’s coaching staff for the 2013 season. Tarasco will serve as the first base coach. Previously a roving outfield instructor/baserunning coordinator within the Nationals’ organization, Tarasco will replace Trent Jewett in the first base coach’s box. Jewett will move across the diamond and become third base coach, taking over for Bo Porter, who

Marlins’ megadeal hurts Miami, but helps Nats

The Marlins have been a bit of a problem for the Nationals in recent years. And that’s putting it quite nicely. Over the last five seasons, the Marlins have absolutely dominated the Nats, going 59-30 against Washington in that time frame. Even this year, with the Marlins floundering (awful pun, I know) and the Nationals taking the division title, Miami played Davey Johnson’s team tough,

Johnson discusses his second Manager of the Year award

Seventeen months ago, Davey Johnson was working as a consultant for a Nationals team that ended up posting its seventh straight losing season since relocating to D.C. Tonight, Johnson was named National League Manager of the Year by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America after leading the Nats to the best record in Major League Baseball and an NL East division title. It’s Johnson’s second

Davey Johnson named NL Manager of the Year

The Nationals’ 20-year-old center fielder was recognized last night as the National League Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year. Tonight, the Nationals’ 69-year-old manager earned some hardware himself after being named the National League Manager of the Year. Davey Johnson beat out Reds manager Dusty Baker and Giants skipper Bruce Bochy, the two other finalists for the award. Johnson earned 23 first-place votes. Baker received

Watch out for Harper in year two

After Bryce Harper won the National League Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year award last night, Davey Johnson has a chance to make the Nationals 2-for-2 in the major end-of-season awards tonight. The Manager of the Year awards will be announced live on MLB Network at 6 p.m. Johnson, who is a finalist along with Reds manager Dusty Baker and Giants skipper Brucy Bochy, is

Harper reflects on his season, winning Rookie of the Year

Sometimes, the winners of various Major League Baseball awards are notified before the announcement is made publicly, giving them a chance to soak in the moment and share the news with their family and friends. Not tonight. Bryce Harper had no idea he’d won the National League Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year award until he heard his name live on MLB Network. Harper learned

Bryce Harper wins NL Rookie of the Year

Bryce Harper’s ridiculous rookie season, one of the best in major league history by a teenager, just got an exclamation point put on the end of it. Harper has won the National League Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year award, voted on by members of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. The announcement was made live on MLB Network. In an incredibly close vote, Harper

Awards week has arrived

We’ve already had The Sporting News Rookie of the Year award and the Players Choice Award for Outstanding Rookie. Tonight, Major League Baseball’s official Rookie of the Year award will be handed out. Awards week begins tonight at 6 p.m., with the announcement of the American League and National League’s top rookies, kicking off four days of presentations recognizing the top performances put up this

Johnson to manage one more season, move to consultant role in 2014

The Nationals have officially announced that Davey Johnson will return as manager for 2013. Barring a change, however, this season will be Johnson’s last as the Nationals’ skipper. A release sent out by the team says that Johnson will move into a consulting role with the Nationals after this upcoming season. Johnson’s consulting deal runs through the 2014 season. “I love managing this ballclub in

Searching for southpaws

During the bulk of the 2012 season, the Nationals carried three left-handed relievers in their bullpen. For the final month of the season, they had four southpaws working in relief. As of today, the Nats don’t have a single lefty reliever under contract for 2013. Sean Burnett, Michael Gonzalez and Zach Duke are all free agents this offseason, and will test the market before determining

LaRoche declines Nats’ qualifying offer

Free agent first baseman Adam LaRoche has declined the Nationals’ qualifying offer, which would have given him a one-year contract for the 2013 season worth $13.3 million. In no way should this be a surprise; LaRoche is the top free agent first baseman on the market and clearly has his eyes set on a multi-year contract. LaRoche had until 5 p.m. today to accept the

Johnson to return as Nationals manager for 2013

It doesn’t come as much of a surprise, but it’s news most Nats fans will probably embrace: Davey Johnson will be the Nationals’ manager for the 2013 season. The Nationals have reached an agreement with Johnson that brings him back to the dugout in a managerial role next season, according to multiple reports. This comes after Johnson led the 2012 Nats to their first playoff

Some of this, some of that

Today is a pretty big day in Dan Kolko’s world. And yes, I’m writing in the third person. The college basketball season kicks off today, which marks the beginning of one of my favorite sports to watch. I’m also thrilled to see the University of Maryland basketball team back in action. Full disclosure: I didn’t actually go to UMD. I’m a graduate of the University

LaRoche, Desmond, Strasburg win Silver Sluggers

Not only did Adam LaRoche win a Gold Glove as the National League’s best defensive first baseman, he also will take home a Louisville Slugger Silver Slugger as the NL’s top offensive first baseman. It’s the first time LaRoche has won a Silver Slugger. And LaRoche wasn’t the only Nationals player to be honored for his offensive production tonight. Shortstop Ian Desmond and right-hander Stephen

For starters, Nats will keep their options open

When you survey the Nationals’ roster, you see only four starting pitchers locked in for the 2013 season: Stephen Strasburg, Gio Gonzalez, Jordan Zimmermann and Ross Detwiler. These four starters all put up strong 2012 campaigns and could easily end up being slotted one through four in the Nationals’ rotation next season. The current state of the Nats’ starting staff has led many observers to

Johnson, Harper, Gonzalez all finalists for end-of-season awards

The Nationals are well-represented in Major League Baseball’s end-of-season award discussion. Nats manager Davey Johnson was named one of three finalists for National League Manager of the Year, Bryce Harper is up for NL Rookie of the Year and left-hander Gio Gonzalez is a finalist for the NL Cy Young Award. Johnson joins Reds manager Dusty Baker and Giants skipper Bruce Bochy as the finalists

Rendon still has something to prove before reaching bigs

Today marks the beginning of the GM meetings out in Indian Wells, Calif., an event that runs through Friday. These meetings aren’t nearly as significant as the annual Winter Meetings when it comes to free agent action or trade talk, but they serve as a nice starting point for a lot of offseason deals which are completed at a later date. While Mike Rizzo is

Jackson hasn’t “closed the doors” on a return to Nats

Back at home after returning from a recent trip out west, Edwin Jackson isn’t stressing about his contract negotiation process. The free agent right-hander hit the open market more than a week ago and has had plenty of chances to check in with his agent and ask which teams have already come calling. But Jackson says he’s been pretty hands-off when it comes to the

A non-update update on LaRoche

How much should the Nationals be prepared to pay in order to keep Adam LaRoche in D.C.? How long a contract should they be willing to offer? Those are questions that are being tossed around both by people within the Nationals organization and within LaRoche’s camp. Contract talks are still not to the point where a deal is expected in the very near future, according

Corrales leaves Nats after six seasons

After spending the last six seasons with the Nationals, Pat Corrales has left the organization to become a special assistant to Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti. Corrales served in a number of roles during his time with the Nationals. He was the team’s bench coach on three separate occasions (2007-08, the second half of 2009 and the second half of 2011), served as a special

One area that needs little to no improvement

When you assess the Nationals’ roster, there are a handful of needs which will have to be addressed this offseason. There’s obviously the Adam LaRoche situation, which will determine who will man first base for the next two or three seasons and also will end up impacting Michael Morse and the starting left field job. There’s a need for a fifth starter, now that Edwin

How ‘bout Haren?

As of midnight, free agency has officially begun. After being able to talk solely with their previous team for the last five days, free agents are now allowed to chat with any team and begin negotiations on contracts for the 2013 season. Adam LaRoche will mull over his one-year, $13.3 million qualifying offer from the Nationals, but it’s an offer he’s certain to decline. A

Nats extend qualifying offer to LaRoche, not Jackson

The Nationals have extended a qualifying offer to Adam LaRoche, an industry source has confirmed, guaranteeing the team a compensatory draft pick in 2013 if LaRoche chooses to sign elsewhere. The Nats did not extend qualifying offers to any of their other free agents, including right-handed starter Edwin Jackson. LaRoche now has seven days to accept a one-year, $13.3 million deal. He’s expected to decline

Some more buzz on Bourn (updated)

The Nationals have been linked to Michael Bourn for some time now, dating back a couple years to his days with the Astros. The reasons are fairly obvious: The Nats have been searching for their long-term answer in center field, they could use speed and a stable presence at the top of the order (even though Jayson Werth is an option there), and Bourn’s agent

LaRoche, Burnett decline options, become free agents

As expected, both first baseman Adam LaRoche and left-handed reliever Sean Burnett have declined their mutual options and have become free agents, a source confirmed Thursday. LaRoche had a $10 million mutual option for 2013, while Burnett’s option was for $3.5 million. Assuming the two players don’t reach a new contract with the Nationals before Saturday, they will hit the open market and be allowed

How high can Jordan Zimmermann go in 2013?

Not only was Bryce Harper apparently pretty excited to welcome kids to his doorstep for Halloween, he also threw on a costume himself. What did the 20-year-old dress up as? Take a look. And be proud of me for avoiding the obvious joke about his attire. If you still needed a reason to consider pitchers’ wins a useless statistic, look at the stats line put

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