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Wire Taps: Nationals up for BBWAA awards this week; Howie Kendrick the Nats’ MVP? Will Anthony Rendon and Stephen Strasburg stay?

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Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news before the awards start getting handed out and Mike Rizzo starts to talk at the GM Meetings...

MLB 2019 World Series Champion Washington Nationals Parade Photo by Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post via Getty Images

It’s BBWAA awards week, with Washington’s third baseman Anthony Rendon (who is now a free agent) up for NL MVP and Nationals’ starter Max Scherzer a finalist for NL Cy Young, so there are reasons to pay attention to those announcements. GM Mike Rizzo is in Arizona to kick off the GM Meetings. Exciting, right?

So, there might actually be some news to cover over the next few days. Until then, go read your links...

NATS BEAT:

Howie Kendrick was most valuable player for the Nationals - (Washington Times)
"You could make the case that Kendrick, one of the Nationals postseason stars and the National League Championship Series Most Valuable Player, was an MVP candidate for the regular season as well, if we are to accept the meaning of the word 'valuable.'"

All signs point to Ryan Zimmerman returning to Nationals - (NBC Sports Washington)
"Zimmerman filled the last year with firsts and repeats. He, like the team, advanced out of a playoff series for the first time."

Final 2019 MLB Cy Young, MVP awards predictions - (WTOP)
"As it is, an award that [Max] Scherzer seemed to have on lockdown until his midseason injuries is projected to go, once again, to Jacob deGrom."

Forever etched into Nats lore, what's next for Kendrick? - (MASN)
"It’s easy to forget now, but Kendrick was a huge question mark entering the season."

LOCAL BEAT:

Catching the ride: MSU grad Harris shares World Series experience with Nationals - (starkvilledailynews.com)
"When the Nationals advanced through the National League playoffs and won the World Series a couple of weeks ago, [Emilee] Harris and her team were there to document it all."

Resilient Barrett never gave in, now a World Series champion - (247Sports.com)
"Sure, he was left off the postseason roster as the Nationals made a championship run to the World Series out of the one-game National League wildcard, but months after a night he long assumed he’d never have again, Barrett was parading down the streets of the Nation’s Capital, the trophy of all trophies in hand and beer flowing from float to float."

Millions keep rolling in for family behind 'Baby Shark' - (CantonRep.com)
"Nationals outfielder Gerardo Parra began using it as his walk-up music, leading to crowd singalongs with shark-jaw gestures, scenes that echoed across TVs as the team broke out of an early season slump. They rode the wave all the way to the championship."

SNS: Epworth native Tom Davis plays key role in Nationals organization - (KCRG.com)
"[Tom] Davis is the Director of Entertainment for the Washington Nationals. It's a position he's held since 2007."

NATIONAL(S) BEAT:

Howie Kendrick: Cincinnati Reds show interest, per report - (Cincinnati Enquirer)
"The Cincinnati Reds are among three teams showing interest in veteran infielder and Washington Nationals postseason hero Howie Kendrick, according to a report Sunday via Twitter from Ken Rosenthal..."

MLB Hot Stove: Kris Bryant, Mookie Betts and more could be on the move - (WaPost)
"If the state of baseball’s talent marketplace at this early stage of the offseason sounds a lot like last year’s, it is not just your imagination."

NL East offseason preview -- Will Nationals keep the band together? - (ESPN)
"There are a lot of ways this offseason could play out for the champs. But the preferred path is the simplest: Strasburg and Rendon returning to defend the franchise's first title."

Predicting 1 future MVP from each team - (MLB.com)
"Remember when we were worried Soto’s genius was being lost among his higher-profile teammates, and even fellow NL East-er Acuña? That won’t be a problem again."

Here Are 13 Free Agent Relievers Red Sox Could Target This Offseason | Boston Red Sox - (NESN.com)
"[Daniel Hudson] surely earned himself a few extra bucks based on his performance with the Washington Nationals, particularly during the playoffs, following a midseason trade from the Toronto Blue Jays."

NL EAST UPDATES:

Phillies will focus on starting pitching at GM meetings - (Philadelphia Inquirer)
"The Phillies neglected their starting rotation last winter, only for it to finish with a 4.64 ERA and one starter -- Aaron Nola -- who made at least 10 starts and posted an ERA better than 4.00."

What makes Pete Alonso's journey to Rookie of the Year lock even crazier - (NY Post)
"Any intrigue surrounding the National League Rookie of the Year vote likely concluded in August and September as Pete Alonso was crushing his way into the record book."

Mike Soroka’s rise no surprise to Baseball Canada veterans - (The Star)
"Former Canadian big leaguer Chris Reitsma knew Mike Soroka had the potential to become a top pitching prospect when he first met the Atlanta Braves rookie at a baseball camp in Calgary a decade ago."