WASH: 3 players Nationals should sign to minor league contracts
One aspect which was missing from the Washington Nationals in 2020 was a home run hitter off the bench. This franchise has always had a guy who could be called on to hit a long ball when needed (Adam Lind, Matt Adams, Mark Reynolds). Time to bring in Justin Smoak and see if he has any gas left in the tank, or power in the stroke.
Getting a veteran like Smoak on a minor league contract may be difficult. He has a proven track record (196 HR over 11 years) and is one year removed from a $4M deal he signed with the Milwaukee Brewers.
The investment didn’t pay off and by early September Smoak was kicked to the curb. The San Francisco Giants brought him in for a whirl and he was hitless in six at-bats before being released for the second time in less than a month.
True, Smoak is a lifetime .229 hitter. Sure, its been four years since he crushed 38 home runs. A look at the current depth chart at first base displays Jake Noll, and nothing else.
Guys like Justin Smoak are not signed to minor league contracts to play in the minors. They are signed to make the team out of spring training and hit bombs when the season starts. If the price is right, he needs to be brought in to compete for a roster spot.