Early Thursday morning word first came out that John Lannan had lost his arbitration hearing against the Washington Nationals. He will earn $5 Million for the 2012 season, rather than the $5.7 Million he had requested. While the left-hander certainly has some value to the team, it’s important to remember that this was only his second time through arbitration. Lannan will be under team control through at least 2013 before reaching free agency and his 2013 salary will be influenced both by how he performs this season and how much he is paid. He’s a quality pitcher, don’t get me wrong, but I’m glad to see him make $5 Million instead of $5.7 Million.
However, what he makes may ultimately end up being a moot point. Shortly after word came out that the team won the hearing, rumors also started to swirl that Lannan could be available on the trade market. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports first reported the news, including a hint that the team could be “aggressively pursuing” Edwin Jackson (who agreed to terms with the team later Thursday afternoon). Rosenthal also stated that the team wanted to move Lannan first, to clear payroll space to accomodate Jackson, but it remains unclear if that truly is part of the motivation considering the Jackson deal has already been announced. As of this morning, there isn’t any additional news on a potential move involving Lannan or any other potential pitching options.