UPDATE (2:21 p.m.): The Washington Nationals have claimed to come to an agreement with Anthony Rendon on a one-year deal to avoid arbitration. The details of this deal will be added to this post once the information becomes available.
Rendon, 27, is entering his third year of arbitration after a season in which he finished in the top 6 of NL MVP voting for the second time of his career. The Texas native slugged .301/.403/.533 with 25 home runs, 100 RBIs, 81 runs, 84 walks and 82 strikeouts.
Rendon will play a major role in the Nats’ offense once again this season, slotting somewhere between the No. 3-5 slots in the lineup. Bryce Harper will likely test the free agent market next winter, which would make Rendon a prime candidate for hefty extension if Harper leaves and the Silver Slugging third baseman is able to replicate his 2017 numbers.
The Nationals’ payroll, including all current guaranteed contracts and an estimation of $675,00 for this year’s league minimum salary that nine players on the team would receive, sits at $163,722,856 by Cot’s Contracts’ estimations. Tanner Roark ($6.475 million) and Michael Taylor ($2.525 million) agreed to deals ahead of the 1 p.m. arbitration deadline earlier today.
After making $5.8 million in 2018, Rendon is due for a significant increase in salary after his stellar 2017 season (MLB Trade Rumors projects him to make $11.5 million). He has just two seasons left in D.C. before hitting free agency.