Stephen Strasburg put his San Diego home on the market. Jeremy Hellickson is returning to his 2018 home. Bryce Harper still hasn’t found a home for 2019, and the folks (or at least one folk, wait, that’s still plural) over at Forbes thinks it’s because Harper and his agent have an unrealistic view of the market at this point. Pitchers and catchers report next week. Go read your links...
Jeremy Hellickson returning to Nats on major league deal - (MASN)
"A mid-March addition last spring - on a non-guaranteed, minor league deal - Hellickson proved to be a savvy pickup for the Nationals."
Nationals re-sign Jeremy Hellickson to add needed starting pitching depth - (NBC Sports Washington)
"He, at a minimum, adds competition in spring training and support for the expected limited innings of Anibal Sanchez and Joe Ross at the back end of the rotation. Hellickson could also flatly claim the fifth spot."
Jeremy Hellickson returns to Nationals - (MLB.com)
"It is unclear whether Hellickson will slide back into his role as the team's fifth starter or simply be given a chance to compete for the job."
Nationals bring back Jeremy Hellickson to compete for rotation spot - (WaPost)
"The Nationals’ 40-man roster is full, and they will need to make a corresponding move to make room for Hellickson once the transaction is complete."
777 MLB hitters have put the ball in play 50+ times over the last four years.— Baseball America (@BaseballAmerica) February 7, 2019
Victor Robles ranks 733rd in exit velo. https://t.co/H7ZmiTQZXs
With or without Bryce Harper, Nats outfield has talent and star power - (MASN)
"One of these days, Harper is going to make his decision at long last. And the safer bet still has him going somewhere else. That’s just simple math talk, folks. Yes, there’s a chance he stays, but it’s less than a 50-50 chance, right?"
Nats infield returns almost entirely intact, with one big change - (MASN)
"[Brian] Dozier, 31, played through a bone bruise in his left knee much of last year, and he admitted it had an adverse effect on his swing."
What’s not to like about proposed MLB rules changes? Nothing, except for one - (WaPost)
"Owners are happy that players, who hate to change their habits, have agreed to speed up the game and thus improve the product for fans."
10 players you forgot were Nationals - (MLB.com)
"The year that would produce the first postseason team in Nationals history actually began with a 35-year-old Lidge as the club's closer coming out of Spring Training after an injury to Drew Storen."
MLBs 10 best starting pitcher duos for 2019 - (MLB.com)
"[Patrick] Corbin is one of three pitchers on this list to change teams this offseason, having parlayed a well-timed breakout into a six-year, $140 million deal with Washington."
White Sox reportedly facing more new competition in the Bryce Harper derby - (NBC Sports Chicago)
"White Sox fans' attention seems squarely focused on Manny Machado as they wait for baseball's free-agent freeze to break. But it's important to remember they're still in the Bryce Harper sweepstakes, too."
MLB's highest paid players rankings 2019 Major League Baseball season - (AZCentral.com)
"There's a new No. 1 player on the list: Washington Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer. Scherzer is set to make more than $37 million in 2019."
Machado, Harper And Other Elite Free Agents Still Unsigned As Spring Training Looms - (Forbes)
"Harper and Machado, in particular have priced themselves out the market.
“'These guys want $350 million and we’re not going anywhere near that,' said an executive, who asked to remain anonymous."
The NL East is trying to catch the Braves; should they be favored? - (AJC)
"The more I look at it, the more I’m convinced there isn’t a more competitive division top-to-bottom than the National League East."
RANDOM NATIONAL(S) MEDIA:
The Washington Wizards’ John Wall and D.C. Sports Despair - (The Ringer)
"... the Nationals—most likely, though it hasn’t yet been set in stone—who seem intent on letting Bryce Harper, the face of the franchise and newly a free agent, walk away."
It sure doesn’t feel like the #Nats offer of beyond 10 years/$300M to Bryce Harper is still on the table. Or he has no interest in returning. It feels more like Boras is trying to manipulate the demand by pulling more clubs in at a lower level and trying to build it back up again— Steve Phillips (@StevePhillipsGM) February 7, 2019