The Nationals completed the 2023 season with a 71-91 report that left them as one of many worst groups within the Nationwide League, even because it represented a considerable enchancment over the membership’s 107-loss 2022 marketing campaign. Whereas the membership has sat out the highest of the free agent market throughout the latest seasons of their rebuild, plainly will not be the case this offseason because the membership appears to be like to improve on the infield corners and at DH, per TalkNats. The membership has already been linked to a reunion with third baseman Jeimer Candelario, who was posting career-best numbers with the Nats previous to being dealt to the Cubs on the commerce deadline. The report means that the membership has curiosity in first baseman Rhys Hoskins and outfield/DH slugger Jorge Soler along with Candelario. The report goes on to point that Washington has been “very energetic” within the beginning pitching market up to now within the offseason, although it doesn’t join any particular names to the membership.
The rumored targets make sense for the Nationals. The membership has a serious gap at third base provided that former high prospect Carter Kieboom has failed to ascertain himself the large league stage. Kieboom’s .207/.266/.368 slash line (70 wRC+) in 2023 was largely in step with his profession numbers of .199/.297/.301 (65 wRC+), and Candelario or one other third base addition would virtually actually symbolize a big improve over the 26-year-old. In the meantime, an addition at first base or DH might assist the membership enhance an offense that presently figures to make use of journeyman Joey Meneses at one place with out a longtime starter on the different.
As for the rotation, the membership has a number of attention-grabbing younger arms reminiscent of Josiah Grey and MacKenzie Gore that they determine to prioritize creating, with veterans reminiscent of Patrick Corbin and Trevor Williams who can reliably eat innings. That being stated, the Nationals’ beginning employees posted a mixed 5.02 ERA final season, the sixth-worst determine within the majors. What’s extra, the membership’s 5.30 FIP within the rotation was higher than solely the lowly Rockies, whereas their beginning employees mixed for simply 4.9 fWAR, higher than solely Colorado and Oakland. That leaves loads of room for enchancment if the membership decides so as to add even a lower-level free agent reminiscent of Matthew Boyd or Frankie Montas to its rotation, to say nothing of a extra impactful addition.
Extra from round MLB’s East divisions…
- Whereas the Mets have reportedly shifted their focus away from celebrity free agent Shohei Ohtani, Jon Heyman of the New York Publish means that the membership remains to be taking a look at potential influence additions this offseason. They’ve lengthy been related to top-of-the-market arm Yoshinobu Yamamoto as they discover potential rotation upgrades, and Heyman provides that the Mets are wanting into “practically each accessible frontline starter” along with Yamamoto, together with southpaws Blake Snell, Jordan Montgomery, and Eduardo Rodriguez. Whereas Heyman notes the membership is unlikely to land a rental arm reminiscent of Tyler Glasnow or Shane Bieber on the commerce market, he does counsel the membership’s curiosity in rotation upgrades extends to White Sox starter Dylan Stop, who’s underneath group management for the following two seasons and has seen loads of commerce buzz this offseason. Rotation upgrades make loads of sense for New York after the membership shipped out veteran aces Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer on the commerce deadline over the summer time, leaving Kodai Senga, Jose Quintana, and newly-signed righty Luis Severino because the membership’s solely rotation locks getting into 2024.
- The Rays have curiosity in a reunion with right-hander Cooper Criswell even after non-tendering him final month, per Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Occasions. Criswell, 27, made his huge league debut as a member of the Angels in 2021 with a one-game cup of espresso that lasted simply 1 1/3 innings. He spent the previous two seasons as a member of the Rays, with a 5.45 ERA and 5.00 FIP in 36 1/3 innings of labor throughout 11 appearances. Whereas these numbers are actually nothing to write down dwelling about, Criswell’s skill to go a number of innings and 46.8% profession groundball charge on the huge league stage might make him a worthwhile depth addition for a Rays membership that relied on 40 completely different pitchers all through the 2023 marketing campaign.