Free agents are an integral aspect of building a roster, and the Washington Nationals have hit big on several. We take a look at Mike Rizzo’s top ten free agent signings.
The Washington Nationals have been one of the most consistent franchises in baseball since Mike Rizzo grabbing the reigns as the team’s general manager in March 2009. Since taking over for Jim Bowden, Rizzo’s Nationals have the sixth-most wins in baseball, a remarkable feat considering the 59-win depths the franchise was facing when Rizzo was promoted.
Rizzo has typically built his teams through trades and the draft – six of the eight current starters came to D.C. via a deal or the draft, as well as three starting pitchers and the team’s two best relievers – but he will dip into free agency every now and then to push the squad over the top.
It seems as if Rizzo will mostly eschew the big-ticket free agents this year, though he did re-sign pitcher Brandon Kintzler to a two-year contract. Still, Rizzo has inked his fair share of interesting contracts during his time in Washington.
Rizzo grabbed the head job too late in the offseason leading up to the 2009 campaign, so he did not make any real moves until the following winter. Let’s start there, and grade his 10 biggest free-agent signings throughout his tenure.