Washington Nationals Rumors: Could Stephen Strasburg Be Dealt For Andrew Miller?

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Even with all the quality pitching free agents on the market this winter, Washington Nationals’ fans should get used to seeing Stephen Strasburg’s name around in all trade rumors this offseason since Strasburg is in the final year of his contract. That being said, could the Nats deal one of their top pitchers in a contract year to get an established closer for the next three seasons?

On Friday night, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports and MLB Network reported that New York Yankees’ general manager Brian Cashman was open to all trade suggestions this winter. One of the names that was floated out there today is the team’s closer Andrew Miller. According to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports/MLB Network, New York is listening to offers on Miller and the Yankees could be looking to improve their starting rotation. A possible return for Miller that was tweeted was none other than Strasburg:

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Last offseason, the Yankees signed Miller to a four-year, $36 million after he finished the 2014 season for the Baltimore Orioles (traded from the Red Sox). The 30-year-old left-hander finished third in the American League in saves with 36 in his first full year as closer. In 60 games, Miller went 3-2 with a 2.04 ERA and struck out 100 batters in 61.2 innings as he won the Rivera Reliever Award in the American League.

While Miller would end up being an upgrade for the Nats’ bullpen, I doubt that this trade would ever happen. For one, I don’t think the Nationals should or will trade Strasburg because he is going to be a big part of this team next season. Plus, I want to see how he does after a strong finish to this season and with pitching guru Mike Maddux as his coach.

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Yes, Strasburg’s value is down because he only has one year left on his deal and Scott Boras is his agent, which means he is likely heading to free agency after next season. I don’t think they would trade young starter Luis Severino, first baseman Gregory Bird, or shortstop Jorge Mateo in any deal unless it’s for a closer like a Craig Kimbrel or Aroldis Chapman. Catcher Gary Sanchez could be a target in trade talks considering he has been dominating the Arizona Fall League, but the Nats have young catchers Pedro Severino and Spencer Kieboom in their farm system behind Wilson Ramos, who will be a free agent at the end of next season.

Next: Nats Free Agent Profile: Darren O'Day

Mike Rizzo is going to look to fix the bullpen this offseason, but it won’t be at the cost of a Strasburg. Plus, teams won’t give up much for Strasburg since he will be one of the best pitchers on the market next offseason. Rizzo should be listening if Miller is available, but this is a move that I can’t see happening between the Washington Nationals and the New York Yankees.

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