Ah, the baseball trading deadline is an exciting time of year regardless of whether your team is buying or selling. As for the 2021 Washington Nationals, they are sellers. All out sellers. Sellers and rebuilders from what it looks like.
Were just a couple names to have been moved, like Brad Hand, who went to the Toronto Blue Jays, or Max Scherzer who went to the Los Angeles Dodgers, getting rid of expiring contracts could have meant the Nationals were just retooling. Adding Trea Turner in the Scherzer mix, means the Nats are tearing the house down to the studs.
Hours after the blockbuster trade, Kyle Schwarber was dealt as well.
And the Nats didn’t stop there. Daniel Hudson was moved late in the night as well. Any takers on Yan Gomes? One name who may fly under the radar, though garner some interest. Josh Harrison.
The Nationals would be wise to move Josh Harrison, but not on the cheap.
Josh Harrison can play any position on the field save pitcher and catcher. Okay, his center field and first base experience total just eleven innings over his eleven year career, but he can handily play any other position.
Josh Harrison is making next to nothing. Signed to a one year, $1M contract, the money left isn’t going to break the bank for any contending team.
Josh Harrison has an OPS of .770. Good enough for top five on the Nationals. Well, maybe that doesn’t say much, but he can still get on base. He’s also hitting .312 with runners in scoring position this year.
All of those are positives for a team looking to acquire a utility infielder. All of those are also reasons, the Nationals can’t just give him away. Do I think the Nats get a Top 30 prospect back. No, not at all. Do I think the Nationals need to get someone back we have heard of. Yes.
Ever heard of Andrew Monasterio or Jhon Romero? Yeah, me neither. Those were the returns for Daniel Murphy and Brandon Kintzler a couple years ago. Harrison needs to garner more. To compare these may be a little off. Murphy was hobbled on a bad knee and Kintzler had worn out his welcome and the Nats would have taken anything for him.
A better comparison is Ceasar Hernandez, who was traded from the Cleveland Indians to the Chicago White Sox this year, for a AA pitcher. Sure, Hernandez has 18 home runs, but Harrison has a better OPS. Hernandez only plays second base. Hernandez strikes out more. Hernandez doesn’t run as well as Harrison. Hernandez carries a team option on his contract, Harrison is free to walk.
Remember when the Nationals acquired a utility infielder a few years ago at the trade deadline? He ended up hitting the most important home run in team history. Time to sell high on Josh Harrison and allow him to be that guy for some other team this fall. All while the Nats get something worth while in return.