Washington Nationals: Weekend Rumors, Links And Tweets.

• DC GM Mike Rizzo spoke to MLB.com's Bill Ladson last week in an article on the Nationals' interest in free agent right-hander Chien-Ming Wang entitled, "Nationals monitoring Wang's progress", in which Mr. Rizzo signaled a shift in Washington's approach to the remaining free agent arms on the market, telling Mr. Ladson that any veteran pitcher who might still sign in the nation's capital would have to do so, "...at the Nationals' price." In the next few days, Mr. Ladson noted on Twitter, that he expected the DC GM to, "...focus on pitching the rest of the offseason," with future Hall of Famer John Smoltz, at least in Mr. Ladson's opinion, "a perfect fit", though, "...his price must come down." 

• Just two weeks back, MLB.com's Bill Ladson reported via his Twitter account that, "The #Nats have talked to John Smoltz's agent recently, but there isn't any progress to report." 

• FOXSports.com's Jon Paul Morosi named the New York Mets as another potential suitor for Smoltz in an update of FOXSports' "Buzz: Latest from the MLB offseason", subtitled, "Mets more likely to sign pitcher than catcher", where Mr. Morosi wrote that the former Atlanta Braves' ace and closer and fellow free agent Todd Wellemeyer were on New York's radar. 

• Smoltz, now 42, signed with the Boston Red Sox last January, agreeing to a one-year/$5.5 million dollar deal that included incentives that could have earned Smoltz as much as $10 million total, but he was released by the Red Sox and signed with the Cardinals in August for what Cot's Baseball Contracts reports was a, "...pro-rated share of $0.4M Major League minimum, or about $102,732)."

• FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal reported earlier this winter that a "mutual interest" existed between the Nationals and Smoltz, with Mr. Rosenthal speculating at the time that Smoltz would, "...almost certainly prefer to sign with a National League contender rather than the Nationals," but, Mr. Rosenthal noted, "The Nationals will try to sell Smoltz," who has history with Nationals' team President Stan Kasten from their time in Atlanta, "...on the idea of serving as a mentor to their young pitching staff. Smoltz might be intrigued by the notion, particularly if his other options are limited."

• On January 29th, SI.com's Jon Heyman reported via Twitter that the New York, "#mets are said to have fallen behind in smoltz derby. could add to the semi illustrious list of players to pass on them."

• Are there any other teams out there still pursuing John Smoltz? Recent rumors have him waiting til later in the season like Pedro Martinez? Would Smoltz fit in DC? A future Hall of Fame pitcher to go with future Hall of Fame catcher Pudge Rodriguez in an organization focused on developing young pitching...Are Smoltz's options limited enough for him to settle for a mentor role in the nation's capital?

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