Nationals

Quick Links

Nolan Arenado could be a consolation prize for teams that miss out on Anthony Rendon

Nolan Arenado could be a consolation prize for teams that miss out on Anthony Rendon

With top starters Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg off the board, Anthony Rendon is the lone superstar remaining in free agency.

The Nationals, Angels, Phillies, Dodgers and Rangers have all been rumored to be interested in the third baseman, who’s already received “numerous” seven-year offers. But only one team will land Rendon, and with Josh Donaldson representing perhaps the only other viable starting third baseman left in free agency, the clubs that fall short will be left scrambling for a backup plan.

One potential option on the trade market is Kris Bryant, whom the Nationals reportedly inquired about at the Winter Meetings this week. Now, another All-Star third baseman has been made available in the Rockies’ five-time All-Star Nolan Arenado.

Arenado signed an eight-year, $260 million extension with the Rockies last offseason that included a full no-trade clause and an opt-out after 2021. There’s still $234 million plus plenty of incentives left on the deal, making it a comparable contract to what Rendon is expected to receive in this winter’s active market.

But one significant obstacle that could hold up a deal is Arenado’s full no-trade clause, giving him the ability to deny any trade should it be accepted by the team. He obviously wouldn’t have agreed to stay with the Rockies if he didn’t like Colorado, but the team has only made the playoffs twice in his seven-year career and was swept in its sole NLDS appearance (2018).

The amount of prospect value the Rockies would ask for in return likely depends on how much salary opposing teams are willing to take on.

When Giancarlo Stanton was traded by the Marlins to the Yankees in 2017, Miami only received one top-100 prospect, a 17-year-old signee out of the Dominican Republic and infielder Starlin Castro—but New York absorbed all of the salary aside from $30 million that will only be paid by the Marlins if Stanton doesn’t exercise his opt-out in 2020.

Arenado is a career .295 hitter who’s played in at least 150 games and hit over 30 home runs in five straight seasons. In addition to placing among the top eight in NL MVP voting each of those five years, Arenado is also a seven-time Gold Glove recipient at third base. He's played his entire career in Colorado.

MORE NATIONALS NEWS:

Quick Links

MLB Rumors: Braves reportedly agree to one-year contract with OF Marcell Ozuna

MLB Rumors: Braves reportedly agree to one-year contract with OF Marcell Ozuna

The Braves had a massive hole in the middle of their lineup after Josh Donaldson signed a four-year, $92 million contract with the Twins last week. 

In response, the Nationals' biggest rival in the NL East has reportedly agreed to a one-year, $18 million deal with outfielder Marcell Ozuna. 

The Braves and Nationals both have to focus on replacing significant production at third base with Donaldson and Anthony Rendon moving on with lucrative contracts. The Nationals acquired Starlin Castro, brought back Howie Kendrick and Asdrubal Cabrera and are hoping for a big step forward from Victor Robles. 

With Ozuna, the Braves may have a better chance at replacing Donaldson in the lineup than the Nationals have with replacing Rendon. 

In two seasons with the Cardinals, Ozuna posted a .262/.327/.451 slash line with 52 home runs and 177 RBI. 

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.

MORE NATIONALS NEWS:

Quick Links

Gerardo Parra promises the Nationals will return to the postseason

Gerardo Parra promises the Nationals will return to the postseason

Gerardo Parra will be in Japan for the 2020 baseball season, but that hasn't stopped him from promising big things from his former team. 

In an exclusive interview with the Nationals Talk podcast Parra promised that the Nationals will make a playoff run this season.

"I promise you these guys go to the playoffs this year too because these guys have a great heart. I know Rendon is not there but this is baseball and this is a great team."

His message for his former teammates is simple, "don’t lose the emotion, don’t lose the goofy we have right now in the clubhouse… we worked a lot to do that."

Want more Nationals interviews? Listen to the full podcast here:

Parra told Nationals Talk that he is so grateful for his time with the team and in the city. 

As the interview wrapped up, he asked if he could have a moment to say something directly to fans. 

He thanked D.C. and everyone who supported the team during this unforgettable season. He hopes fans do not forget how a children's song brought a whole city together, sports fan or not.  
 
 "Enjoy the moment," said Parra. "And baby shark never forget." 

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.

MORE NATIONALS NEWS: