Good evening DoD readers, and welcome to today’s District Daily! Get caught up on the latest Nats news and opinions with some great Washington Nationals articles from around the web below.
In today’s Daily, the Washington Post’s Chelsea Janes discusses general manager Mike Rizzo’s plans for the July 31 trade deadline. As Janes notes, the Nationals certainly have some needs which could be filled via the trade market, and it’s not out of the question that the team could pull off a big trade before the deadline.
But, as we’ve learned over the years, Rizzo holds his cards very close to his chest and doesn’t reveal much about what he’s thinking when it comes to potential deals. If Rizzo’s after a big-name reliever or outfielder, we probably won’t know until the deal is announced. But, as Janes notes in her article, Rizzo is open to making a move that makes sense for the team and helps the ball club improve. And for the Nationals, there’s plenty that could improve.
Of course, the Nationals are in the unique position that they could improve dramatically as a team just by getting health. Indeed, the Nationals have four of their best hitters on the disabled list right now in Ryan Zimmerman, Anthony Rendon, Denard Span and Jayson Werth. Once those four return to the lineup, which should happen in the not so distant future, the Nationals will automatically be a much, much stronger team. Essentially, it would be like acquiring four key players at the deadline—making the team better for the stretch run but without having to sacrifice any players or prospects in a trade.
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So, the Nationals could make a big trade before the deadline. Right now, however, it seems like they’re just as likely to stand pat. One thing’s for certain, Mike Rizo has a plan. And based on what we’ve seen from him over the last few years, it’s probably a good idea to trust it.
Also in today’s Daily, MLB.com’s Jacob Emert discusses how the Nationals’ bench continues to make the most of its limited opportunities.
Be sure to check out both articles below, they’re definitely worth a read. And as always, stay tuned to DoD for all your Washington Nationals needs.
Mike Rizzo on the Nationals’ trade-deadline plans
Before Saturday night’s game against the Baltimore Orioles, someone asked Washington Nationals Manager Matt Williams what his team needed at the trade deadline. He joked the Nationals had several moves already planned, each of which would add an established veteran bat, none of which would cost much at all. At some point around the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline, Washington expects Jayson Werth, Denard Span, Anthony Rendon and Ryan Zimmerman to return. When they do, even if they do not leap into midseason form right away, the top of the Nationals order will improve. Four new bats, no deals necessary.
But even if everyone returns, even if the lineup is restored to full potency, the Nationals may need help. A late-inning reliever could help the bullpen, and pitchers like that tend to become available as teams fall out of contention around this time each season. A proven fourth outfielder and bat off the bench could help should Werth or Span have lingering concerns, though Michael A. Taylor has proven himself capable. Read full article here.
Nats’ bench making most of opportunities
BALTIMORE — In the first-half finale between the Nationals and Orioles on Sunday at Camden Yards, the story followed a familiar script.