Nationals Baseball: Monday Quickie - Juan gone?

Monday, August 01, 2022

Monday Quickie - Juan gone?

The depressing Nats season continues.  The Nats are on pace for 55 wins, they are tied to a millstone of a manager, and they are maybe going to trade their best player - a likely future Hall of Famer. Ugh

However, they may not because getting what they want for Soto may not happen right now.  What they NEED to get is player who projects to a future major league All-Star type - that's like a Top 10 type - or a coupleo of projected starters (Top 100 types).

With the names currently in the mix the Top 10 type is Jordan Walker from STL. The two pitchers are Bobby Miller and Ryan Pepiot from the Dodgers. Anything else doesn't interest me unless current major leaguers get thrown in the mix (doubtful because you need them to win now too), or you flood the Nats with a dump truck full of prospects. 

Still it's not value, it will never be value and with Soto it's not about being competitive and only about the money. Soto is 23. He will likely be very good for over a decade. Do you think you can be good again in a decade? Then you sign him. The Nats should sign him.


 Sigh. Ok got a lot of emails to catch up on.


Anonymous said...

It's not just money. They know they have no shot to re-sign him because the team has no path to competitiveness by 2024. The complete and utter failure to draft/develop any useful players is the reason for this. If they had a couple of young decent players you could see a new owner spending some $$ to get to a decent team quickly. But the cupboard is so bare no one will sign here except at a huge overpay and there's too many holes to fill.

SM said...

Two tangential points:
1. Soto is younger than 12 of the players who played in this year's Futures Game
2. When the Nats trade for prospects, it seems they play okay when they first arrive. But when the Nats' coaches get their paws on them, they decline. It's as if some residual coaching remains from their previous organization, but it's flushed out the longer the Nats have them. (I could provide a list, but Ruiz looks like the obvious one.)

ocw5000 said...

Say what you want about Rizzo, the one constant through his GM tenure is the ability to make good-to-great trades. The only trade you could argue he got fleeced on was the Eaton trade, but Eaton was key to the WS win and played well despite a career-altering knee injury. We should be confident that he'll get value back for Soto (if they move him)

Expos 1983 Blog said...

hey, at least we get to see the great Ehire Adrianza play the hot corner on a regular basis!

TwoGloves said...

Adrianza just got traded to the Braves. Maybe we can get Cano whom they DFA'd!!!

Expos 1983 Blog said...

this may just be the high point of the season!

SM said...

Agreed to point.
But Rizzo's trades have focused on acquiring major leaguers to augment a solid 25-man roster, not prospects.
Some may point to Trea Turner as a prospect, but he wasn't. He was big league-ready, held back only by MLB's byzantine service time rules. (Incidentally, Turner was chirping yesterday about negotiating with the Nats and confirmed what Harper has constantly reiterated: the Nats always lie.)
Last year's sell-off was Rizzo's first sustained effort at restocking the organization with prospects. Yet the big league squad is worse and the farm just as bad. If progress was made, it was only in the heads of the Nats' PR department .
There is a 4 to 5-year window at least before the Nats even whiff contention with Soto but especially without Soto.
If the Nats build around Soto and use him as an anchor to attract free agents and perhaps whip the scouting and player development people to raise their game, then they can shorten the window.
Above all, Rizzo ain't the guy to do it.

Anonymous said...

Off topic, but I have to comment. Just saw the choppers deal with Riley. How in the world do they get their guys to consistently sign BELOW market deals??? First Acuna, then Albies, now Riley. Looks like ANOTHER extended run for Hotlanta.
Granted, Riley is no Soto, but $21 mil/year? WTH??? Their deal w/Olson was market value, but I would have taken Freddie over him and he didn’t come up through their system. I can’t imagine the players union is crazy about this deal either. Have the choppers banned the agent that ruined baseball from their clubhouse? I wish the bugs would take some notes as that agent has sure helped speed up our demise!!!

DK said...

Smartest, most aggressive GM in the majors. Learned his early lessons in Montreal.

Ole PBN said...

I feel like Soto isn’t going anywhere… yet. Right now, the Nats are likely asking more than what teams can/willing to give them. A year or two later, the Nats still won’t feel like it’s enough of a return when LAD calls for a trade, so they’ll make one last effort to sign him in FA and then… poof! He’s gone. Playing for a contender with deeper pockets while Rizzo is panhandling on the corner.

As an aside, I think this ownership dilemma is a bigger factor than people are talking about. Potential buyers likely don’t want the the Lerners making huge transactions like this because it changes the value of franchise significantly. Who wants to buy a Soto-less Nats team at the price the Lerners are asking? But at the same time, Soto doesn’t want to sign here for 15 years without even knowing who the owner is going to be in a year or two. Can’t move him, can’t make him stay. It’s all so unsettling. And what @SM said above and what Bryce and Trea apparently say as well: the Nats always lie. Loved hearing Rizzo say “We’ll I don’t know who leaked it, but it wasn’t from my staff.” Trying to wipe his hands clean from the ownership’s mess of a PR department.

Guys… we’ve been here before and I think we’re all falling for the same scam. We think they learned from this experience the first two times. They might not. I’m calling it right now, they’ll screw this thing up the same way they did with Harper and Rendon. Start getting excited about that compensation pick.

Ok. Vent over. Going to go satiate my soul with some 2019 postseason highlights. It’s all we have.

Ole PBN said...

Also interesting that the Nats haven’t made ANY moves at MLB level. We have several guys that are FA’s at the end of the year that they could probably get some low level prospects in a trade. Isn’t that something Rizzo normally loves to do? Go digging in the trash for his for old picks (hey Daniel Johnson)!

My spidey sense says there’s a reason for the inactivity and it’s not stupidity. Team for SALE! Don’t mess with your assets!

John C. said...

Whatever happened with Harper (rumors are that Rizzo had a deal done until ownership blocked it), they didn’t screw up Rendon. They rode him through his final year of team control all the way to a WS title. They didn’t sign him to an extension, no. But: THAT’S NOT SOLELY UP TO THE TEAM. It’s called “free agency” for a reason.

The Ghost of Ole Cole Henry (JDBrew) said...

Okay, so I think the front office has screwed up on most of these top tier player contracts. They’ve handled nearly all of them terribly. I’m gonna defend the Nats front office one 1 point. YOU DONT WANT RENDON. I loved Tony. But not paying him, is the smartest moves they could’ve made. They should’ve let SS walk as well. Rendon is not good now. Since signing with LAA he has hit .252 with 20hr; a .780 OPS. For $30 million a year. And now he’s gonna make $38M a year for the next 4 years. Think his age 33-36 season is gonna be good? I definitely don’t.

Mr. T said...

If I'm buying the Nats, I don't want Soto. That's $50 million per year for 10 years (or whatever), and nothing else. How are you going to field a competitive team around him? This isn't basketball. 5 or 6 good players > 1 generational talent. Trade him now, get some young kids under control, and then you have options.

As far as waiting until the offseason: if the team you're trading with is trying to win now, I don't see why they'd be any more likely to trade MLB-ready players in December vs. August. The Nats have more leverage now, with the pressure is on the team trying to win now--they want Soto for this pennant race they're currently in, plus two more. It's more hypothetical in December. Either way, it's a rebuild for the Nats. MLB-ready vs. needs another year or two in the minors shouldn't be a huge stumbling block, although it does lessen the value of the not-quite-ready players a bit.

Anonymous said...

I also think you can kind of forgive ownership for spiking the Harper trade. It was a mistake but an understandable one. That team was out of it, but kind of just barely. And that team had been getting really unlucky with injuries and run distribution -- it should have been in contention, and if the season were starting over, we may have even been the odds on favorite in the division.

The Lerners just had a sunk-cost brain fart that could have happened to any of us.