Though it was reported days ago, the announcement of Matt Wieters’ free agent deal in D.C. was pending the completion of his physical.
The Washington Nationals officially announced their deal one-year deal with Matt Wieters this morning.
Wieters’ contract includes a player option for 2018, and though the numbers weren’t announced in this morning’s press release, the contract will pay the 30-year-old now-former Baltimore Orioles’ catcher $10.5M this season and $10.5M if he opts to stay on in the nation’s capital, with $5M deferred to 2021.
In his eighth season with the Orioles, who drafted him 5th overall in the 1st round of the 2007 Draft, Wieters posted a .243/.302/.409 line, 17 doubles, 17 home runs and a total of 88 wRC+ in 124 games and 464 plate appearances in 2016, over which he was worth 1.7 fWAR in what was his first full season back following Tommy John surgery in 2014.
Today’s press release, much like Scott Boras’s pitch in recent months, notes that the veteran catcher, “has posted a catcher’s ERA of 3.98 or lower in three of the past five seasons — [and] has thrown out 30.4 percent (150-of-493) of attempted base stealers in his career. In 2016, he caught 31.7 percent of runners (20-of-63).”
To make room on the 40-Man Roster for Wieters’ addition, the Nationals announced this morning that they were placing 24-year-old prospect Jose Marmolejos on the 60-Day DL with a forearm strain.
Marmolejos, the two-time organizational Minor League Player of the Year (2015-16), was added to the 40-Man this winter to protect him from selection in the Rule 5 Draft.
In 2016, the left-handed hitting first baseman played at High-A Potomac and Double-A Harrisburg, posting a .286/.381/.495 line, 36 doubles, five triples and 11 HRs in 103 games and 444 plate appearances for the P-Nats and a .299/.333/.417 line, nine doubles and two home runs in 33 games and 135 PAs for the Senators.
Wieters spoke to reporters in West Palm Beach, FL this morning. Here are the first images of the former O’s backstop in his Nationals duds (Koda Glover gave the Nats’ new No. 32 btw):
#Nats catcher Matt Wieters: "I always thought it was a good fit for me." pic.twitter.com/e6DgHIqZtW— Mark Zuckerman (@MarkZuckerman) February 24, 2017
Matt Wieters in a #Nationals uniform talking to media on first official day in camp. #Orioles pic.twitter.com/UrTO3GciMj— Eduardo A. Encina (@EddieInTheYard) February 24, 2017