The Nationals have several spots to fill, a solid chunk of money to possibly do it with and lots of quality options to choose from.
The free-agent list this year is not about superstar names. Rather, it’s about depth and quality. Even the second tier of free agents holds value, especially if their contracts are brief and costs suppressed by a mediocre market.
All week, we’re going to take a look at individuals who could fit in different places for the Nationals. Let’s take a look at former San Diego first baseman Mitch Moreland.
What he does well: Hits right-handed pitching. Moreland has a career .794 OPS against right-handed pitching, including an .887 OPS in 2019. Moreland is also a good defender at first base. In a nutshell, he’s a veteran left-handed bat ready to platoon.
Where he fits with the Nationals: Precisely at that aforementioned platoon spot. The Nationals are rebuilding their first base situation. Eric Thames, Howie Kendrick and Ryan Zimmerman are all free agents. The Cubs exercised Anthony Rizzo’s option, so he did not hit the open market. Carlos Santana is the best first baseman available. Which means the Nationals could pursue and possibly pay Santana to play the position full-time, or again use a platoon strategy which would necessitate a left-handed hitter like Moreland.
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