One name flying under the radar this winter is that of former Diamondback and Red Sox reliever Brad Ziegler. The 37-year old right hander throws sidearm and averages in the mid-80s, but he’s been fairly consistent over the course of his career.
Ziegler has appeared in at least 64 games every season since 2009. He didn’t step into the closer role for Arizona until 2015, and then went back to set-up duties once being traded to Boston at last year’s trade deadline.
Being as old as he is, Ziegler won’t be seeking any expensive, long-term deal. In fact, the Nats would be able to afford signing both him and Holland if they choose to do so. That may even be a better option than going after one of the big-time closers. The duo would form a formidable back-end of the bullpen alongside Kelley while pushing both Sammy Solis and Blake Treinen into less stressful roles.
The Nats aren’t going to be staying quiet at the Winter Meetings much longer. The team understands that upgrades are going to need to be made if they’re planning on advancing past the Division Series anytime soon. Any of these relievers would provide an upgrade over their current situation, while helping cement them as serious title contenders.