Wire Taps: Nationals Not Done Searching For Catching? Links + More...

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

Will the Nationals add a veteran backstop? Do they really trust Danny Espinosa as the backup infielder/utility man? Do you like the deal for Jerry Blevins more now that another left-handed reliever got a big money contract? Nats links and more below...

So, no one quite believes the Nationals are done searching for catching and at least one report included below says that Washington is still actively looking for a veteran backstop. Not quite sure the Nats will enter the season with Danny Espinosa as the main backup infield option? One columnist below isn't so sure the 2013 Opening Day second baseman is well-suited for the role. Happy with the acquisition of Jerry Blevins after seeing another left-handed reliever, J.P. Howell (2-years/$11.25M), get a big $ deal? A former Nats' 1st Round pick signed with the Orioles yesterday. Catch up on Monday's news + a few things from this morning... Links and lots of them, starting... RIGHT NOW!!!:

• THE BIG STORY!!!:

• "It will be tough with his personality type. But it may be hard, or impossible, for Nats to get what they think is decent value in return." - on Danny Espinosa - "Ask Boswell: Redskins, Nationals and Washington sports" - Thomas Boswell, The Washington Post

• NATS BEAT:

• "Marrero, the Nationals’ highly touted first-round pick in the 2006 draft, was outrighted off the club’s 40-man roster on October 24..." - "Former Nationals prospect Chris Marrero signs with Orioles" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider

• "On the final day of the Winter Meetings, I asked one former big league general manager his thoughts about what the Nats had done this winter." - "Nationals Pastime: Nats' offseason maneuverings getting rave reviews" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com

• "With Jhonatan Solano and Sandy Leon as Wilson Ramos’s backups, they are still sifting through backup catcher options..." - "Leftovers from the Nationals’ winter meetings" - Adam Kilgore, Washington Post

• "Aaron Fitt, Baseball America's national writer, believes that Karns can certainly pitch at the next level, but not necessarily as a starting pitcher." - "No. 8 Nats prospect: Nate Karns" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

• "Instead of tossing around that kind of money in order to procure a southpaw for their bullpen, the Nats opted to go the trade route..." - "Nationals Pastime: On the lefty relief market and the Nats' improved pitching depth" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com

• "Look, all of these lefties have value. And we saw last season how much the Nationals needed a quality left-hander in their bullpen." - "Free agent left-handers priced themselves out of Nationals’ market" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider

• Your Daily Message From The Dalai Lama On Twitter (@DalaiLama):

• NATIONAL(S) BEAT:

• "Bloomberg counted baseball-related enterprises owned by both teams, including the Orioles’ much higher stake in the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network, while Forbes did not." - "TV Revenue Main Difference Between Values of Orioles, Nationals" - Deb Belt, Eldersburg, MD Patch

• "You can understand why the Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Washington Nationals might demur, given the state of the top of their rotations." - "The Screwball: Looking for homes for the best remaining free agents" - Jesse Spector, Sporting News

• "Former NPB pitcher Tomokazu Oka is among the latest to join the club and is hoping to use the pitch to facilitate a return to the majors." - "Oka looking to reign in knuckleball" - Jason Coskrey, The Japan Times

• "Any MLB team can bid up to $20 million for the right to negotiate with Tanaka, or any other NPB player who gets posted by his team in Japan." - "Masahiro Tanaka gets consent from Japan to be posted for MLB after agreement on rules" - David Brown, Big League Stew - Yahoo Sports

• NATSTOWN/MINORS:

• "A decade had passed since new Syracuse Chiefs general manager Jason Smorol last attended baseball's winter meetings." - "Syracuse Chiefs general manager Jason Smorol all business at winter meetings" - Lindsay Kramer, syracuse.com

• "Monday Quickie - Not done yet" - Harper, Nationals Baseball

• "Harrisburg/AA Pitching Staff Year in Review; 2013" - Todd Boss, Nationals Arm Race

• "Winter League Update" - Luke Erickson, NationalsProspects.com

• NL EAST UPDATES:

Phillies: "Four years ago today – December 16, 2009 – the Phillies made one of the strangest pairs of deals in club history when they acquired Roy Halladay from the Toronto Blue Jays, and subsequently dealt Cliff Lee to the Seattle Mariners." - "Four Years Later: Halladay/Lee Day" - Paul Boye, Crashburn Alley

Mets: "Almost every move Alderson has made since taking over in 2010 has been golden." - "Reasons to Love New York 2013 - Sandy Alderson" - Will Leitch, New York Magazine


Braves: "The Braves now have seven remaining arbitration-eligible players on their 40-man roster who are unsigned for the upcoming season..." - "Braves agree to terms with Pitcher Brandon Beachy" - braves.com: News

Marlins: "Cuban-born Marlins' pitcher Jose Fernandez spent Thursday learning about Miami's Cuban Exile community." - "Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez learns about exiled Cuban countrymen" - Juan C. Rodriguez, Sun Sentinel

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