The last week of November...With the GM Meetings in Las Vegas, Nevada under two weeks away, from December 8th-11th, and very little in the way of player movement thus far this offseason, things should start to pick up fairly soon...MLB.com's Bill Ladson got the DC trade talk started up again today with an article entitled, "A's look at Johnson's medical records", where Mr. Ladson reported on Oakland's apparent interest (according to "a baseball source") in the Washington Nationals' oft-injured first baseman, Nick Johnson. Washington Post writer Chico Harlan confirms FOXSports' Ken Rosenthal's mention of the A's inquiries in Mr. Harlan's Nationals Journal post, "The Latest on Nick Johnson." Ken Rosenthal's article, "Sources: Furcal meets with A's officials in Oakland", only makes a passing mention of the A's interest in Nick Johnson, after discussing Furcal's flirtations, toward the end of his article, writing:
"The A's have requested and received the medical records of Nationals first baseman Nick Johnson, who underwent season-ending wrist surgery last June."
In Mr. Ladson's article, the MLB.com writer notes that his source, "...also said that several other teams have Johnson's medical records," but, "...The Nationals would not confirm that such a transaction between them and the A's took place." Mr. Harlan back in the Nationals Journal?:
"Here's what I've heard: Indeed, the A's made the inquiry for those medical records at the very beginning of the offseason, but by no means is a Johnson-to-Oakland trade on the frontburner at this time"
Mr. Ladson says that Johnson could be available if the Nationals sign Mark Teixeira. Mr. Harlan says that the A's could get Johnson if they include Daric Barton, (a former Cardinals' 1st Round pick in '03 acquired by Oakland along with Kiko Calero and Dan Haren for Mark Mulder), in the discussions..."The Nationals would not confirm that such a transaction between them and the A's took place."
Nationals' Fans? In the spirit of the holiday, I ask you, "What Are You Thankful For?"
1) I'm thankful I finally got to see Mike Hinckley pitch in the Majors in 2008.
After 8 seasons in the Minors following the Montreal Expos' selection of the left hander in the 3rd Round of the 2001 Draft, Hinckley, who began his time in the organization as a top starting prospect, finally arrived in DC in September as a reliever, throwing 14.0 innings without allowing an earned run, striking out 9, walking 3 and allowing just 8 hits, effectively earning himself a spot in the '09 bullpen. Look for Hinckley in '09, late in games when lefties step up...
2) I'm thankful that the Nationals "earned" the #1 Overall Pick in the 2009 Draft.
There's no way that Washington can mess this up...A highly-regarded pitching prospect with a notoriously stubborn representative, one Mr. Scott "Maximum" Boras, and the spending-averse Nationals coming off of last draft's Aaron Crow debacle... What could go wrong? The Nationals could decide that they can't sign Stephen Strasburg, who remains the top-rated prospect with his draft year set to play out, and Washington could instead go with a "signable" pick? Strasburg could decide he doesn't want to spend the beginning of his career in the NL East's basement and head down to Ft. Worth to sweat out a season...Positive thoughts, positive thoug...?
3) On a somewhat serious note, I'm thankful that last winter the Washington Nationals took chances on some players who were considered a risk because of their "volatile" personalities, and I'm thankful that, for the most part, with a few missteps, admittedly, the players rewarded the team's faith with significant contributions to the small successes the team and its fans did enjoy this past season.
Sure I watched 98 or so of 102 losses, but it was still fun...
What are you thankful for, Nationals' fan? I'll add any contributions to the list with a credit if anyone leaves anything in the Comments section. Enjoy the holiday...
?'s To Ponder...Do you think the Nationals should trade Nick Johnson? NEW POLL!!! What do you think the Nationals' next big move will be? Sign Odalis Perez? Find another veteran lefty? Who would you want from the A's for Nick Johnson? Do you believe the Nationals will sign Mark Teixeira?