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Matt Adams talks return to Washington Nationals: “It’s a place that feels like home to me.”

Matt Adams signed his second consecutive 1-year/$4M deal and returned to the Washington Nationals for another run in 2019.

MLB: Tampa Bay Rays at Washington Nationals Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Adams said last summer he was open to returning to the nation’s capital even after the Washington Nationals traded him to the St. Louis Cardinals in August.

Adams agreed on a 1-year/$4M free agent deal with the Nationals last week, signing for the same amount he got last time around to come back to a place he said felt like home to him in spite of his relatively short stay in 2018.

“I think it’s just the type of people — not only players and coaches,” Adams explained, “but everybody in the organization, from top to bottom. It’s an A-class organization and it’s a place that feels like home to me. I was only there for three-quarters of a season, but it felt way longer than that.

“I’m very excited that the opportunity presented itself for me to sign back.”

Adams put up a .257/.332/.510 line, eight doubles, and 19 home runs over 94 games and 277 plate appearances before he was traded to the Cardinals for cash considerations on August 21st.

He added a double and three home runs in 27 games and 60 PAs for the Cardinals in what ended up being a 0.8 fWAR campaign for the seven-year veteran, who set a career-high in home runs with his 21st of the season.

Among National League first basemen with at least 450 innings at first base in 2018, Adams was ranked 10th in Defensive Runs Saved (+1 DRS), and he posted the fifth-highest Ultimate Zone Rating, finishing the year with a 2.5 UZR.

He ended up playing significant games when Ryan Zimmerman dealt with injury issues that kept him out of the lineup for a long stretch, and there was a need for a left-hand hitting bat again this winter, so the Nationals and Adams agreed on another deal after parting on good terms.

“The way that everything was left when I was traded, we had good communication up until that point,” Adams explained.

“Everything that was said leading up to that trade [was] that if the opportunity presented itself I would be on their list.

“I’m kind of at a loss for words, just because I’m excited for this opportunity, but I think the team is definitely better than it was last year with the acquisitions that [GM Mike Rizzo] has made so far this offseason, and I don’t think we’re done yet either.”

“It’s an exciting time for fans and we’re excited to get things rolling in 2019.”

Getting the deal done relatively early again this winter, after he signed around this time last December as well, gave the big slugger some peace of mind.

“I think it’s huge and for me, the way that my brain and myself work. The later that I sign the more freaked out I’m going to be,” Adams said.

“It’s the unknown that is out there. Not knowing where you’re going to go and how many people you’re going to know on that team that you sign with.

“For me I was lucky and blessed to be able to have an opportunity to sign back with the Nats where I know everybody and I get along with absolutely everybody from the front office to coaches and all the players.

“I think for me it felt like the right opportunity, and I was just fortunate to get the deal done when we got it done.”