We bring back our Monday Mailbag after a couple of weeks off. This week, could Yasmani Grandal be an option at catcher for the Washington Nationals?
With our next Monday Mailbag, we have some interesting questions to ponder around the Washington Nationals. One of them is centered around one huge position of need for the team, in a catcher.
District on Deck Contributor Tom Sileo recently talked about how the team needs to learn from past mistakes made at the position. Then, on Monday morning, the team made a move to bring back former National Kurt Suzuki on a two-year contract.
However, Mike Rizzo recently told Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post that he is “looking for a front-line catcher,” which Suzuki may not qualify as. So could they add another catcher to be their primary frontline starter? We look at one option below.
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Margaret Crowley (@CrowleyAntmarga): Catcher? Grandal, or someone else?
Based on Mike Rizzo’s intention to acquire a frontline backstop, that probably means we can expect to see him pursue these three names: Wilson Ramos, Yasmani Grandal, J.T. Realmuto. This could still be the case despite Suzuki’s addition on Monday.
Realmuto is significantly better than the other two options, but with rumors that the Marlins are asking for Ronald Acuna Jr. from the Atlanta Braves and Cody Bellinger from the Los Angeles Dodgers, he’ll likely going to cost too much. So of the other two, Grandal is probably the better option.
However, now that the team has signed Suzuki, the addition of Grandal would likely hinge on the future of Bryce Harper. If the outfielder leaves, that could free up funds to make Grandal and Suzuki one of the better catching tandems in baseball. But if he stays, then the organization will likely be happy to roll with Suzuki and promising young catcher Spencer Kieboom.
baeturner (@scherzday): Possible extensions for Turner/Rendon?
This was one of three questions in the tweet, but I feel like it is a key one this offseason. It’s a near-certainty that the front office will pick up extension talks with Anthony Rendon again this offseason. It’s just a matter of when not if.
Surprise surprise, the timing of those extension talks once again revolves around that guy named Harper. Once they know the fate, and potential contract of Harper, they know their budget to work on a Rendon extension.
We actually covered this in our FanSided GM Simulation in which we missed out on Harper, and immediately signed Rendon to an extension, which is a pretty realistic outcome.
Turner, on the other hand, is set to enter his first of four years of arbitration this winter. Sometimes, working out say a four or five-year contract can work out here, as it gives the player some security. However, with a payroll that’s likely to be pushing the luxury tax threshold again in 2018, the Nats are best just paying Turner year-to-year in arbitration for a few years yet.
We’ll be back next Monday with another mailbag to answer your burning questions about the Washington Nationals.