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Wire Taps: Washington Nationals’ trade targets; Nats’ prospect Sterling Sharp a Rule 5 target? Joe Dillon leaves for Phillies

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Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news while we wait to see what Mike Rizzo has up his sleeve...

Divisional Series - Washington Nationals v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game Five Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

So, the Nationals have now lost an inspirational backup outfielder and an Assistant Hitting Coach from the mix of personalities that helped them win it all this past season, so what’s next? Will their third baseman come back? Will their World Series MVP be back in D.C.?

Is there a trade for relief help (as mentioned below), a second base signing, a rotation addition, relief bolstering via free agency, all of the above, or more coming for Mike Rizzo and Co. in the front office in the nation’s capital?

Go read your links while we wait to find out...

NATS BEAT:

After gutting through 2019, what's in store for Max Scherzer in 2020? - (MASN)
"Scherzer had never experienced a season like this one, especially from a physical standpoint. Which now raises a significant question..."

Nationals assistant hitting coach Joe Dillon departs for Phillies - (WaPost)
"One day after losing their first player of the offseason, the World Series champion Washington Nationals lost their first coach."

Assistant hitting coach Dillon gets lead position in Philly - (MASN)
"Dillon joins manager Joe Girardi’s new staff in Philadelphia, where he’ll be reunited with Bryce Harper and get the first opportunity of his career to be a team’s lead major league hitting coach."

Who will be the Nationals second baseman in 2020? - (NBC Sports Washington)
"While Stephen Strasburg and Anthony Rendon highlight the Nationals free agent class, the Nationals Talk podcast discusses what options the team may have at second base."

LOCAL BEAT:

Rob Manfred, Major League Baseball face minefield of problems - (Washington Times)
"We are soon going to find out if Rob Manfred is more than a suit."

Auburn Doubledays plan for “business as usual” during the 2020 season - (CYNBJ.com)
"The Doubledays also have a 'strong hope' that they’ll be part of the Auburn community for 'many more years to come.'"

Tickets available for premiere of World Series documentary - (MASN)
"Major League Baseball announced today the premiere of a documentary film, 'The 2019 World Series,' will take place Dec. 2 at 7 p.m. at The Anthem in Washington, D.C."

NATIONAL(S) BEAT:

[ed. note - “This is probably the best story you’ll read today if you didn’t read it yesterday.”]

WFAN’s Mike Francesa knows which pitchers Yankees’ Brian Cashman should target: Gerrit Cole? Stephen Strasburg? Zack Wheeler? - (nj.com)
"First off, is Cashman better chasing former Houston Astros ace Gerrit Cole or Washington Nationals World Series MVP Stephen Strasburg? 'I would think Strasburg would be the more logical guy for the Yankees,' Francesa said, per WFAN."

Joe Dillon hired as Phillies new hitting coach under Girardi - (FOX 29 News Philadelphia)
"Dillon served as assistant hitting coach for the Washington Nationals for the past two seasons and previously spent two seasons as the minor league hitting coordinator for the Miami Marlins."

Where will Kris Bryant play in 2020? Ranking the Cubs star's best landing spots as trade rumors swirl - (CBSSports.com)
"No team is in greater 'win now' mode than the defending champs, which means it might be time to see if they'll overpay -- assuming Rendon and probably Donaldson are both off the market."

5 trade pieces that could shake up the RP market - (MLB.com)
"In the summer, MLB.com’s Jon Morosi reported that Washington checked in on Giles, and now he could slot into Hudson’s vacant spot."

30 intriguing Rule 5 prospects -- 1 for each team - (MLB.com)
"The best athlete in Washington’s system and one of the premier ground-ball artists in the Minor Leagues, Sharp could be appealing to a club looking for either rotation or bullpen depth."