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Gaudin signs minor-league deal

Dec 17, 2010, 5:15 PM EST

The Nationals have signed veteran right-hander Chad Gaudin to a minor-league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Gaudin, who will be 28 on Opening Day, has pitched for six major-league clubs in eight years, most recently the Yankees. He went 1-2 with a 4.50 ERA in 30 relief appearances for New York this season; he did not pitch in the postseason.

He has experience out of the rotation as well, starting 75 big-league games in his career, including 34 in 2007 with the Athletics (when he won 11 games).

For his entire career, Gaudin owns a 35-39 record and 4.61 ERA with the Devil Rays, Blue Jays, A’s, Cubs, Padres and Yankees.

  1. Anonymous - Dec 17, 2010 at 5:35 PM

    consider this an extra arm and viable only in Emergency situations. Like if the entire bullpen gets food poisoning or stuck in NoVA traffic. Not a solid option, but prob worth a look.

  2. sparky - Dec 17, 2010 at 5:41 PM

    Wow. 28 years old, 7 major league teams. Dude must own a U-Haul.

  3. Nate - Dec 17, 2010 at 5:41 PM

    Rizzo has built a better Bergmann.

  4. Anonymous - Dec 17, 2010 at 5:50 PM

    minor league rosters need filling to, looks like Syracuse has a new arm to fit in.

  5. DFL - Dec 17, 2010 at 5:56 PM

    How many AAA, fifth starters and mop-up pitchers does the Nats have? 50?

  6. Anonymous - Dec 17, 2010 at 6:06 PM

    By my count about one for every three of your ridiculous complaints

  7. Steve M. - Dec 17, 2010 at 6:14 PM

    Gaudin is a good reliever when he keeps the ball down in the zone. A low risk pickup but I didn't think the Nats needed any more RH relievers.

  8. autobits - Dec 17, 2010 at 6:21 PM

    Probably a candidate to fill the Miguel Batista role for this season.

  9. tystoneman - Dec 17, 2010 at 6:22 PM

    They should call it Phase Duece, because that's what I feel is being dropped on us.

  10. N. Cognito - Dec 17, 2010 at 6:22 PM

    Anonymous said… "By my count about one for every three of your ridiculous complaints"WOW!! There aren't even that many players on all the 40 man rosters in baseball.

  11. PAY TO PLAY - Dec 17, 2010 at 6:37 PM

    Mark, some are saying Gaudin will compete as a starter. Is that correct?

  12. DC Tom - Dec 17, 2010 at 7:01 PM

    True or false: Chad Gaudin will start more games for the Nats in 2011 than Donovan McNabb started for the Redskins in 2010.

  13. DFL - Dec 17, 2010 at 7:10 PM

    False, DC Tom. However, JD Martin, Colin Balester, Matt Chico, Shairon Martis, Jason Marquis, John Lannan, Jordan Zimmerman, Garrett Mock, Craig Stammen and Chuck James will likely start more games than Rex Grossman.

  14. JaneB - Dec 17, 2010 at 7:21 PM

    Why can't Miquel Batista fill the Miquel Batista role this year? He was pretty reliable last year.

  15. JD - Dec 17, 2010 at 7:32 PM

    JaneB, I agree; I think Gaudin is more of a candidate to start, he has a pretty good track record from his days in San Diego and Oakland but he got buried in NY; since this also happened to Vazquez and Pavano I would take that with a grain of salt. He is better than Stammen, Martin, Atilano et al.

  16. Anonymous - Dec 17, 2010 at 7:33 PM

    Agree about Batista. Plus he's a quality veteran to have sitting in the bullpen with the kids.

  17. Will - Dec 17, 2010 at 7:34 PM

    I wouldn't be surprised to see the Nats sign Batista to a minor league deal, but there's no reason to guarantee him a roster spot.Last season, he was very lucky to come away with the success he did. His BABIP, which measures how often balls hit into play fell for a hit, was .258 last year, much less than his career average in .300. This means, he was pretty lucky in recording outs. On average, batters should have expected to get a dozen or so more hits against him. Furthermore, his left on base percentage was one of the highest of his career at 77%. This means 77% of all batters that reached base did not end up scoring. In a normal year, it would have been closer to 69%. That's another dozen or so runners that should have scored.Couple his luck with his awful strikeout to walk ratio (he strikes out 6 batters per 9 innings and walks 4.25 per 9 innings), Batista shouldn't be expected to reproduce the numbers he put up last year.I'm not against giving him a chance next year, but Rizzo is smart to pick up alternatives.

  18. Anonymous - Dec 17, 2010 at 8:27 PM

    ESPN seems to think the A's might just surprise people next year after 81 wins last year. Their very young rotation and now the Hammer? Everyone is complaining about Rizzo and the Lerners. Look at this payroll? … they have money to spend: With both Ben Sheets' and Eric Chavez's exorbitant salaries no longer on the A's books, general manager Billy Beane has a plethora of financial flexibility. Oakland currently has just $29.64 million committed for 2011, and while that will go up once all the arbitration cases are settled, the Opening Day payroll will be south of $50 million. For 2012, there's just $8.54 million committed. In other words, if the A's need to take on salary to trade for a player who will put them over the top, they are in great position to do so.Its not about money its about prospects (esp. starting pitching) coming through as they did for the A's. Message to Zimmermann, Detwiler, Mock, Solis, etc. Stop underachieving will ya?Must be Insider to view:

  19. DC Tom - Dec 17, 2010 at 8:36 PM

    Miguel Batista is 39, Gaudin is 28. That explains a lot. And scouts obviously see the faint glimmer of something serviceable in Gaudin, or he would not keep getting chances.Also, don't discount the possibility that some other team may make Batista a better offer than the Nats.

  20. Harper_ROY_2012 - Dec 17, 2010 at 9:04 PM

    I like this signing. Gaudin could start or relieve, sort of a Chuck James but one I would not mind seeing on the mound at Nats Park.

  21. Betsy - Dec 17, 2010 at 9:33 PM

    All right, I'm intrigued by what the Nats are doing in the offseason…but can I please change the subject?Do we know who is going to broadcast the games this year? Please tell me I am not going to have to turn down the sound again this season…

  22. sec 3, my sofa - Dec 17, 2010 at 9:42 PM

    "Couple his luck with his awful strikeout to walk ratio (he strikes out 6 batters per 9 innings and walks 4.25 per 9 innings), Batista shouldn't be expected to reproduce the numbers he put up last year."I understand the logic, and mostly agree in this case, but it does seem a shame to punish the guy for doing a good job. Just sayin.

  23. HHover - Dec 17, 2010 at 9:46 PM

    What amuses me is how close Gaudin's #s are to another pitcher whom Rizzo reportedly covets.Gaudin: 4.61 ERA1.5 WHIP4.2 BB/97 K/9661 IPEdwin Jackson:4.62 ERA1.48 WHIP3.9 BB/96.7 K/9879 IPLooks to me like Rizzo just *got* Edwin Jackson, but at the Chad Gaudin price–which seems about the right price.

  24. Will - Dec 17, 2010 at 9:50 PM

    But had Chad Gaudin ever pitched a no hitter??!But in all seriousness, the similarities between the two pitchers are striking, especially when I realized Gaudin is only 6 months older than Jackson.

  25. Tim - Dec 17, 2010 at 9:52 PM

    Any chance Henry Rodriguez gets a chance to start for the nats? He was a starter at one time for As but I guess they moved him to the pen, given our needs it woudl seem to make sense to see if he can handle starting.

  26. JD - Dec 17, 2010 at 10:53 PM

    Tim, He moved to the pen because his secondary pitches (slider, changeup) are below par and he can't throw them for strikes. He can come in and blow people away with 99 mph fast ball but you can only do this for an inning or two at a time. I can see him beeing effective following Lannan or Livo to the mound.

  27. sec3 - Dec 17, 2010 at 11:17 PM

    Ray King used to describe his job as getting an out and getting off the mound before they caught on.

  28. Will - Dec 18, 2010 at 12:16 AM

    Rodriguez has Daniel Bard written all over him. He's a little more erratic, but they both have wicked fastballs (Rodriguez's is certainly faster- he hit 103 in a game last year!).If he can control the pitch better then he's an ideal closer, if not, he's a good set-up man for Storen.

  29. Mark - Dec 18, 2010 at 12:34 AM

    Sec3, love the Ray King reference!

  30. Anonymous8 - Dec 18, 2010 at 1:34 AM says the Nats are going after Derrek Lee. Wouldn't think a RH 1st baseman coming off of an injury would now be the main target over LaRoche.

  31. BinM - Dec 18, 2010 at 1:53 AM

    @HHover: Nice observation! Short of the no-hitter, they're reasonably close to being the same pitcher statistically. Gaudin is a good two-way insurance policy in SYR – He comes into camp as a NRI to challenge the 'swing pitchers' (Stammen, Chico, Mock, Martis, etc.). If he earns a 25-man slot to open the season, some of the holdovers get released / DFA'd; That's just the way it works.

  32. BinM - Dec 18, 2010 at 2:06 AM

    @Anon8: Sadly, that would fit with the overall 'game-plan' since Rizzo took charge. Focus on a player coming off an injury / 'off' year, who will look for less than market-value on a short-term deal. Not quite 'dumpster-diving' in this case, but I'd rather see a LH-hitter with 20-HR potential somewhere in the lineup to offset the current RH-skewed lineup.

  33. Mark - Dec 18, 2010 at 2:27 AM

    You would think go with the younger safer pick with LaRoche then the 35 year old Lee. Can't imagine the money being much different and getting a lefty would be nice.Rizzo must think Lee will be the Lee of 2009.

  34. sec3 - Dec 18, 2010 at 2:53 AM

    *than*And hearing 2 yrs for Lee

  35. Ernie - Dec 18, 2010 at 3:26 AM

    @Mark and Anon8:I don't particularly care who we sign for 1B at this point (I haven't read a strong case for any particular player, and they all seem relatively fungible to me so far), but I see the Lee talk as an effort to pressure LaRoche to sign for whatever offer Rizzo has on the table. The Nats' obvious need for a LH 1B would give LaRoche a lot of leverage in whatever negotiations are happening. He knows the Nats need exactly what he has to offer. My totally uninformed and ignorant take on this is that Rizzo is trying to signal that they have other options, in an effort to regain some sort of strength in the LaRoche negotiations. I saw in particular that Ladson's sources noted not only the interest in Lee but the lack of discussions with LaRoche. If it's strategic leaking, that point might focus the pressure on LaRoche a little more. No guarantee that this kind of approach would work, but I could see that being a likely tactic. (Or is that all too transparent?)At times I think Rizzo's praise of Desmond is a similar tactic to inflate his value in any potential trade. But maybe I'm just thinking optimistically there.

  36. Sunderland - Dec 18, 2010 at 11:16 AM

    Ernie – Interesting take on the 1B situation. I've felt that Rizzo's trade of Willingham signaled that he felt very confident about signing LaRoche. Still feel that way.HHover – nice observation of Gaudin / Jackson. Gaudin does have some potential. It's one of the few bennies of having a rotation in disarray. Gaudin will sign a minor league deal with us knowing he has a legit shot at the rotation.

  37. Sunderland - Dec 18, 2010 at 12:13 PM

    St. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP)—The Tampa Bay Rays moved to bolster a depleted bullpen, agreeing to a $925,000, one-year contract with free agent reliever Joel Peralta(notes).The 34-year-old right-hander went 1-0 with a 2.02 ERA in 39 appearances for the Washington Nationals last season.

  38. BinM - Dec 18, 2010 at 3:43 PM

    @Sunderland: Looking at Peralta's career numbers, I can't help thinking that he had a career year in WSH at the age of 34. Happy he got the contract with TB, but also glad Rizzo wasn't swayed by last year.





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