Nov 29, 2010, 4:45 PM EDT
Javier Vazquez's signing with the Marlins yesterday depleted one more name off the list of potential Nationals pitching acquisitions, a list that is losing some of its luster.
Not that Vazquez's decision to take $7 million and move closer to home in Florida instead of coming to D.C. was a devastating blow to the Nationals' offseason plans. I don't think he would have been the difference between 75 and 85 wins in 2011.
But in a market boasting one really big fish (Cliff Lee) and plenty of less-than-inspiring alternatives, Vazquez seemed to be one of the better fallback options for a Washington club that is simply trying to stabilize its rotation while Stephen Strasburg recovers from Tommy John surgery and Jordan Zimmermann develops into a front-line starter.
So who's left for the Nationals to pursue? Let's break down the possibilities by four categories: 1) legitimate aces, 2) second-tier free agents, 3) trade targets, 4) low-risk options…
I think we all know only one free agent pitcher falls into this category: Cliff Lee. The Nationals have certainly made contact with agent Darek Braunecker and will attempt to be taken seriously by the left-hander.Read more »
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