Wire Taps: Washington Nationals Still Close To Deal With Mark DeRosa? Still Pursuing Prince Fielder? Gio Gonzalez?

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 24: Drew Storen #22 of the Washington Nationals and Ivan Rodriguez #7 of the Washington Nationals celebrate after defeating the Atlanta Braves at Nationals Park on September 24, 2011 in Washington, DC. The Washington Nationals won, 4-1. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Boswell On The Nats: Reports last night said that the Washington Nationals were close to reaching a one-year major league deal with 36-year-old infielder Mark DeRosa, who's missed significant time the last two seasons with a wrist injury. As of this afternoon, however, no deal was announced. The Nats are reportedly still talking to the A's about Gio Gonzalez though there's been no comment out of 1500 South Capitol St., SE. Are the Nationals really going after Prince Fielder? Who knows? "Run Silent" Rizzo's leakproof front office isn't spilling secrets. The big story last night dealt with Washington's front office and Washington Post writer Thomas Boswell's take on what's happening there. Read that story, RIGHT NOW!!!!

• THE BIG STORY!!!:

• "The Washington Nationals never really seem to learn. Or, rather, the Lerners don’t. As soon as you think they start to get it, they backslide again." - "Nationals have more cash coming in, but refuse to spend it" - Thomas Boswell, The Washington Post

• NATS BEAT:

• "Prior to injury, though, DeRosa was a legitimate threat. From 2006-2009, DeRosa averaged a .281 batting average, .356 on-base percentage and .448 slugging percentage." - "Nationals nearing a deal with utility player Mark DeRosa" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "According to baseball sources with knowledge of the negotiations, the Nationals are closing in on a deal with 36-year-old Mark DeRosa..." - "Nationals nearing deal with utility man DeRosa, a favorite of Johnson" - Pete Kerzel, MASNSports.com

• "Two of the players the A's are looking at are right-hander Brad Peacock and catcher Derek Norris." - "Nationals actively pursuing A's ace Gio Gonzalez" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com: News

• [Carlos] Rivero, a 23-year-old Venezuelan, had his best season as a professional in 2011..." - "Nationals claim 3B Carlos Rivero on waivers" -Dave Sheinin, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "The Nationals envision using DeRosa as something of a 'super-utility' player, giving him at-bats at first base, second base, third base and both corner outfield positions." - "Nats close to signing veteran DeRosa" - Mark Zuckerman, NatsInsider.com

• "The Nationals announced Wednesday afternoon that they claimed infielder Carlos Rivero off waivers from the Philadelphia Phillies." - "Nationals claim infielder Rivero from Phillies" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "Long before the hope embodied by Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper, Ryan Zimmerman was the face of the Nationals..." - "What if ... the Nationals hadn't drafted Ryan Zimmerman?" - Pete Kerzel, MASNSports.com

• "If healthy, DeRosa is a versatile player who has played six different positions in his career..." - "Nationals closing in on signing Mark DeRosa" - Dave Sheinin, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "The Yankees seem more interested in free agent Hiroki Kuroda and trade target Jair Jurrjens. And the Twins may lack the resources. That leaves the Marlins, Nationals, Red Sox and Blue Jays as realistic landing spots." - "Seven teams interested in Oswalt for one year" - Corey Seidman, CSNPhilly.com

• "During the Winter Meetings, manager Davey Johnson acknowledged that he called DeRosa after it was learned that first baseman Chris Marrero would not start the 2012 season on time." - "Source: Washington Nationals nearing deal with Mark DeRosa" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com: News

• "Video: Hot Stove talk on CSN" - Mark Zuckerman, NatsInsider.com

• "I also wrote recently that, in my opinion, it's silly to attach the 'cheap' charge to the Nationals inasmuch as no one really knows how much any team spends on player development." - \"Some follow-ups: Cameron, player development, Rivero" - Phil Wood, MASNSports.com

• Your Daily Message From The Dalai Lama On Twitter (@DalaiLama): "Wealth should serve humanity, not vice versa."

• NATS MINOR/WINTER LEAGUES:

Liga Mexicana del Pacifico: Culiacan 6, Mazatlan 5 - Rafael Martin (MAZ) - 0.1 IP, BS, 1 H, 1 BB - Box Score.

Liga Venezuela Beisbol Profesional: Caracas 8, Caribes 7 - Henry Rodriguez (CAR) - 1.0 IP, 1 BB, 1 K - Box Score.

Liga Venezuela Beisbol Profesional: Zulia 6, Magallanes 0 - Jesus Flores (MAG) - 1 for 3, (.340 AVG); Carlos Maldonado (ZUL) - 1 for 3, 2 R, 1 BB - Box Score.

Liga de Beisbol Dominicano: Gigantes 4, Licey 3 - Atahualpa Severino (LIC) - 0.2 IP, 1 H, 1 K - Box Score.

Liga de Beisbol Profesional de Puerto Rico: Carolina 2, Ponce 0 - Hassan Pena - 1.0 IP, 1 K - Box Score.

• "[Tripp] Keister played minor league baseball for four seasons and had always had the hunger to remain in the game and be close to the game if he couldn't play professionally." - "Tripp Keister thrilled to get shot at managing GCL Nationals" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

• NATSTOWN:

• "10 Things To Make Nationals Spring Training Better For The Fan" - Danger Nat, Nationals Inquisition

• "[Gio] Gonzalez became arbitration eligible this off-season and is due a HUGE raise from last season’s $420,000 contract. He does not become a free agent until 2016..." - "Nationals mull Gio Gonzalez, but at what cost?" - Dave Nichols, District Sports Page

• "While you're sitting around wondering what Mike Rizzo will cook up next on his Hot Stove..." - "Gingrich named hitting coach for Washington Nationals AAA affiliate" - Nats Enquirer

• "Hosts Chris Rose and Kevin Millar gave a shout out to the blog Monday as they issued their predictions for the 2012 presidents race on The MLB Network’s 'Intentional Talk.'" - "MLB Network: Presidents race predictions for 2012" - Presidents Race Fan, Let Teddy Win!

• "In this week's Nats Talk On The Go podcast, The Nats Blog's Joe Drugan and Capitol Baseball's Craig MacHenry talk about the Washington Nationals." - "Nats Talk On The Go: Episode 4" - The Nats Blog

• "DeRosa, over just 73 games in 2010-11, hit .235/.313/.279 with just six extra base hits with the Giants. His latest wrist injury came in May and sidelined DeRosa until August..." - "Nationals close to deal with INF Mark DeRosa" - Dave Nichols, District Sports Page

• "It's not that doing nothing in the offseason of 2012 is in itself terrible. But in context it feels pretty bad." - "Even Boz is into it" - Harper, Nationals Baseball

• NL EAST UPDATES:

Phillies: "The Phils’ payroll for 2011, as calculated by Major League Baseball for tax purposes, was between $177 million and $178 million, third highest in the majors behind the Yankees and Red Sox." - "Phillies avoid luxury tax in 2011" - Jim Salisbury, CSNPhilly.com

Mets: "According to the New York Times, if you become a minority partner of the New York Mets, you get among other things, quality time with the team mascot Mr. Met, a business card that states 'owner'..." - "Top 5 Sports Stories" - Len Berman, Huffington Post

Braves: "The Atlanta Braves' Christmas Video Is Ho-Ho-Terrible" - "VIDEO: The Atlanta Braves' Christmas Video Is Ho-Ho-Terrible - Jon Bois, SBNation.com

Marlins: "The next candidate up for review is Anibal Sanchez, who in two seasons has transformed himself from an unreliable, oft-injured starter to the Marlins' most dependable option at starting pitcher." - "2011 Marlins Season Review: Anibal Sanchez, the Workhorse" - Michael Jong, Fish Stripes

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