Big City is set to come back to the nation’s capital as the Washington Nationals agreed on a one-year deal to bring Matt Adams back for the 2019 season.
The Washington Nationals have now made their seventh major league acquisition of the offseason as they agreed to a year-year contract with Matt Adams. After a highly successful year in D.C. last season, bringing back the slugger as a backup first baseman is an excellent move.
Ken Rosenthal of The Atheltic first reported that the two sides were in agreement over a reunion. Jesse Dougherty of the Washington Post later reported that the deal was a one-year deal for $3 million with a mutual option for 2020.
The Nationals have acquired Adams for the second straight offseason, after he signed with the Nats for $4 million on December 22nd, 2017. This year, they’ve made the same move, just a week earlier on December 15th.
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The left-hander slashed an impressive .257/.332/.510 with the Nationals last season with 18 home runs and 48 RBIs. However, with the team in free fall in August, they traded him to the St. Louis Cardinals for cash considerations in an attempt to get something for him before his contract expired.
Adams brings back a steady veteran bat off the bench who can fill in at first base, given Ryan Zimmerman‘s struggles to stay healthy for a full season in recent years. Last year, Zimmerman was forced to miss just over two months early on, which allowed Adams to flourish in a near full-time role.
A reunion between the Nats and Matt Adams was always possible if he failed to find a full-time gig elsewhere given his familiarity and success with the team. After the Cardinals acquired Paul Goldschmidt, it seemed unlikely he would go back there, so D.C. seemed like the next best option.
He even ended up in the visiting locker room at Nationals Park last September when the Cardinals played the Nationals. He talked to Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post about his time with the team and his appreciation of the atmosphere among the players.
"“I got along with everybody over there. Gio [Gonzalez] took me under his wing when I showed up in spring, and I got to know everybody else. Being able to share the field with all the veterans over there and get to play behind Max [Scherzer] and [Stephen Strasburg] was fun. It’s definitely good thinking in my mind that I was able to play with those guys with a curly W on my chest.”"
Matt Adams was a fantastic signing for the Washington Nationals in 2018, and the team will hope he can have the same effect in 2019. Check another need off of the front office’s offseason wishlist.