They're just getting started in the Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel in San Diego, CA and already there's talk out of the 2014 Winter Meetings about the Washington Nationals making another attempt to sign Jordan Zimmermann to an extension.
The 28-year-old, 2007 Nats' 2nd Round pick finished his 2014 campaign, his sixth in the majors, with a (14-5) record, at a career-high +5.2 fWAR, posting a 2.66 ERA, a 2.68 FIP, 29 walks (1.31 BB/9) and 182 Ks (8.20 K/9) in 32 starts and 199 ⅔ IP and capped the season off with the first no-hitter by a D.C.-based pitcher since the 1930's and a solid outing in Game 2 of the NLDS with the San Francisco Giants.
Before FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal's latest report on Sunday night, the talk in the lead-up to the Winter Meetings was all about whether or not the Nationals would trade Zimmermann, or any of their five core players who are due to become free agents after the 2015 season.
Doug Fister, Ian Desmond, Tyler Clippard, Denard Span and Zimmermann can all become free agents after next season if they're not signed to extensions this winter or next year, so their names have predictably been bandied about with Clippard deemed "likely" to get dealt by one of Rosenthal's sources just this past weekend.
The Nationals arrive in San Diego in the market for a second baseman. They could add a reliever. Bench help wouldn't hurt.
Before they get down to business with other teams, however, the Nationals are apparently planning on talking to Zimmermann again:
Sources: #Nationals planning another effort to sign Jordan Zimmermann long-term. Team has made multiple attempts. Entering walk year.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 8, 2014
MLB.com's Bill Ladson confirmed that he too was hearing what Rosenthal heard:
• "To trade Zimmermann, the Nationals would have be wowed by an offer, perhaps a young middle infielder who can play second this year..." - "Nationals to make another effort re-sign Jordan Zimmermann long-term" - James Wagner, The Washington Post
One more detail: the Nats and Zimmermann's representatives will meet this week at the Winter Meetings.— James Wagner (@JamesWagnerWP) December 8, 2014
• "The Nationals have made it clear to opposing teams that they are open to trading Zimmermann - if the right deal presents itself." - "Nationals Pastime: Nats taking another shot at extension with Zimmermann" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
• "In fact, the same source said that the Nationals are still trying to sign Zimmermann long term..." - "Nationals working to sign Zimmermann long term" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com
Nats Beat Winter Meetings Edition:
• "Nationals manager Matt Williams has arrived, and caught up with a couple D.C. reporters briefly in the lobby. He's set to formally meet the media on Tuesday..." - "Nationals Pastime: Quick news and notes from San Diego" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
• "There’s only one glaring hole in the Nationals’ roster at the moment. They need a second baseman. So that would appear to be the club’s top priority..." - "What do the Washington Nationals have in store at the Winter Meetings?" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider
• "The free agent infielders that remain are limited, and none of those that are still out there seem to be great fits for the Nationals." - "Nationals Pastime: We're off for San Diego" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
• "There's no doubt that Clippard has established his importance to the Nationals, who have come to rely on his rubber right arm in runs to National League East titles two out of the last three seasons." - "Nationals Pastime: Could this be the end of the Clippard era in D.C.?" - Pete Kerzel, MASNSports.com
Doug Fister Stories:
• "Fister’s participation marks the third straight year that a Nationals player has taken part in the USO Tour." - "Doug Fister traveling on USO Tour" - James Wagner, The Washington Post
• "Ray leaves the Tigers organization after just one year, in which he went 1-4 with an 8.16 ERA in nine games (six starts) at the major league level..." - "Nationals Pastime: Continued confusion over Tigers' side of Fister trade" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
National(s) Beat Winter Meetings Edition (w/ Nats/Scherzer talk):
• "With all of Washington’s players due to become free agents next winter... it’s hard to imagine General Manager Mike Rizzo sitting still." - "Jon Lester among six hot topics to watch as Winter Meetings begin" - Barry Svrluga, The Washington Post
• "A number of pitchers entering their free-agent years are in play, including the Nationals' Jordan Zimmermann and Doug Fister..." - "Winter meetings should offer endless intrigue, possibilities" - Ken Rosenthal, FOX Sports
• "In Orlando, Fla., in 2010, the Red Sox and the Washington Nationals gave deals worth a combined $268 million to Carl Crawford and Jayson Werth." - "Baseball’s Annual Winter Meetings Have It All, Except Quietude" - David Waldstein, NYTimes.com
• "Have the Washington Nationals figured Scherzer is a better long-term bet than Jordan Zimmermann, Stephen Strasburg and Doug Fister?" - "Four figures who will influence MLB's winter meetings" - Gabe Lacques, USA TODAY Sports
• "The Washington Nationals are listening to offers for starters Jordan Zimmermann and Doug Fister, who are on the last year of their contracts." - "MLB winter meetings will be a mad dash for bats" - Bob Nightengale, USA TODAY Sports
• "There’s also been a lot of talk of dealing second baseman Howie Kendrick, which would bring back at least a middle-of-the-rotation pitcher from the Nationals, Yankees, or Blue Jays." - "Look for baseball winter meetings to be as busy as ever" - Nick Cafardo, The Boston Globe
• "Will the Tigers give Scherzer the big money? The Nationals? Any team? Silence has never sounded this loud." - "How Scott Boras’ demands cloud market for Max Scherzer" - Joel Sherman, New York Post
Source: Korean SS Jung-Ho Kang expected to be posted next week.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 7, 2014
• "The Washington Nationals are auctioning off team promotional banners that hung near the National Mall." - "Nationals Auctioning Team Banners That Hung in D.C." - CBS DC
• "In an interview back in 2012, Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper made it clear that if the whole baseball thing didn't work out for him, he had his back up plan already figured out. He wanted to be a firefighter." - "Bryce Harper spends day with firefighters in Nevada" - Mark Townsend, Big League Stew - Yahoo Sports
• "The Indians have signed veteran catcher Adam Moore and outfielder Destin Hood to minor league deals." - "Cleveland Indians sign Adam Moore, Destin Hood to minor league deals with spring training invitations" - Paul Hoynes, cleveland.com
NL East Updates: Winter Meetings Edition - Amaro quiet, Alderson patient, Marlins' extensions, Braves busy:
• Marlins: "There have been unconfirmed reports the Marlins made a six-year, $40 million offer to Fernandez and discussed one with Yelich comparable to the six-year, $31 million deal Pirates outfielder Starling Marte got." - "Marlins not in rush on deals for Fernandez, Yelich, others" - Craig Davis, Florida Sun-Sentinel
• Mets: "While warning that things can and do move fast at the Winter Meetings, Sandy Alderson was preaching patience Sunday afternoon." - "Sandy Alderson says Mets will be patient" - Kristie Ackert, NY Daily News
• Braves: "Speculation about the futures of Upton and Gattis will likely highlight many of the Braves rumors at this year's Winter Meetings..." - "As Winter Meetings begin, Braves could be busy" - Mark Bowman, braves.com
• Phillies: "Perhaps the arrival of baseball's winter meetings will set the Phillies' offseason plans into motion." - "Amaro: Talks active, kept quiet" - Ryan Lawrence, Philadelphia Daily News