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Washington Nationals Rumors: Will Nats’ “late push” for Wade Davis land the closer?

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ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark is reporting that the Nationals are making a late push for Royals’ closer Wade Davis, who was rumored to be headed to the Cubs.

MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Kansas City Royals Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE: 10:32 PM EST - FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal is reporting that the Cubs and Royals are now close to completing their rumored deal for Wade Davis:

NATIONAL HARBOR, MD. - Reports earlier this evening from the Winter Meetings in the Gaylord Resort and Convention Center had the Kansas City Royals trading closer Wade Davis to the Chicago Cubs. Soon after those initial reports, however, it appeared that it wasn’t as done a deal as some had been told.

“There could be a snag in the Wade Davis-to-the-Cubs deal, according to a source,” Yahoo!Sports.com’s Jeff Passan wrote on Twitter.

“Never was done and far from a certain thing at this point.”

A little over an hour later, ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark tweeted that the “snag” or “hangup” in the deal might be another offer... from the Washington Nationals.

“The hangup in Wade Davis' reported deal to the Cubs? The Nationals have made a late push,” Stark wrote.

The Nats are known to be in the market for a closer, having pursued Mark Melancon after acquiring the right-hander at the non-waiver deadline last July, only to have the veteran reliever sign a 4-year/$62M free agent deal with the San Francisco Giants on Monday.

Nationals’ GM Mike Rizzo was asked this afternoon if a closer remained atop their list of needs on Day 2 of the Winter Meetings.

“We’ve got a lot of lines in the water,” Rizzo said, deftly avoiding yet another attempt at getting clear information.

“We’re looking at a lot of different options and avenues to go and we’re very active here and will continue to be.”

Davis, who missed time with a flexor strain in his right elbow that led to two DL stints in 2016, returned to action in September, finishing the season with 27 saves, a 1.87 ERA, a 2.29 FIP, 16 walks (3.32 BB/9), 47 Ks (9.76 K/9) and a .210/.295/.242 line against in 43 1⁄3 IP.

He’s under contract for $10M after the Royals picked up his option for 2017.

Can the Nationals swoop in late and find themselves a closer?

UPDATE: Jon Heyman too is hearing the Nationals are making a late play for Davis: