Nationals: DoD Writers Answer Important Free Agency Questions
By Max Rayman
Who is one free agent you want to see the team sign?
Max Rayman: Obviously I would love to see Max Scherzer back in D.C., but that is a pipe dream. Nick Castellanos (.309 BA, 34 HRs, .939 OPS) and Kyle Schwarber (.266 BA, 32 HRs, .928 OPS) would both provide some significant thump to the lineup and with the DH sure to come, neither would have to play the field. Castellanos just had a career year with the Reds and will more than likely opt out of his contract. Schwarber instantly became a fan favorite in D.C., over his half a year with the team. Both would add some much-needed protection for Juan Soto in the lineup.
James Simmons: Asdrubal Cabrera is a free agent again. Just kidding. Kyle Schwarber would be the guy I would love to see back in a Washington Nationals uniform. He electrified the fans over the month of June and he carried the team to within two games of the division lead. His attitude, presence, and stroke were all exactly what the team needed. Do I think the Nats will bring Schwarber back? I do not. We’ll see what he can do in the ALCS with the Red Sox, though he’ll probably command a little more money than the Nats are willing to pay. Therefore he’ll probably turn down his portion of the mutual option he has with the Sox.
Nationals Source: My dream signing would be Nick Castellanos. This would go against my no splurging rule, but he will not have a qualifying offer and will only just be turning 30. He would change this offense and with a DH on the way that should add some longevity. I doubt it happens as a move like that causes many other things, but he could be a real game-changer for the offense.
Joe Edelen: If there were one free agent that I’d like to see the Nationals sign, it’d without a doubt be Carlos Correa. At only 27, Correa could excel alongside Juan Soto for years to come, but the price will be hefty to lock down a player like Correa as many teams will be interested. I think the most realistic candidate for the Nationals to sign this offseason would be Starling Marte. After being traded to Oakland at the deadline, Marte was a spark plug for the Athletics. Between his stints in Miami and Oakland, Marte batted .308, stole 47 bases, and provided Gold Glove-caliber defense all year long.
At this year’s trade deadline, Marte was traded to Oakland for Jesus Luzardo, one of Oakland’s top young pitchers. This is important because if the Nationals were to sign Marte, he not only would provide an upgrade at the center field position, but if 2022 doesn’t quite pan out, the Nats should be able to get a good return if they trade Marte to a contender. To me, signing a player like Marte would come with little risk and a high reward.