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Nats add Teahen on minor-league deal

Feb 6, 2012, 8:38 PM EST

US Presswire photo
Mark Teahen hit .200 with four homers last season for the White Sox and Blue Jays.

Still seeking some more bench options, the Nationals today announced they’ve signed veteran corner infielder Mark Teahen to a minor-league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Teahen, 30, is a career .264 hitter with 67 homers, 332 RBI and a .327 on-base percentage in parts of seven seasons with the Royals, White Sox and Blue Jays. Once considered an up-and-coming third baseman in the Kansas City system, he’s become more of a utilityman in recent years, learning to play first base as well as both corner outfield positions.

A left-handed hitter, Teahen struggled last season, batting .200 with four homers, 14 RBI and a .273 on-base percentage in 78 combined games with Chicago and Toronto.

Though he’ll have a chance to crack the Nationals’ Opening Day roster, he’ll face long odds. More likely, he’ll head to Class AAA Syracuse and serve as insurance in case the Nationals need help down the road.

  1. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 8:41 PM

    Nice. Like this move. Low risk. He fills a potential need down the road, and he has some upside.Best 25 go North!dfh21

  2. Avar - Feb 6, 2012 at 8:56 PM

    ditto dfh21. Routine, no risk minor league deal. Ho hum.Any chance we can skip the posters who will write how stupid this is because it doesn't make us a contender/fix the leadoff spot/close the Federal deficit? Just once?

  3. Gonat - Feb 6, 2012 at 8:59 PM

    Another left-handed bat. They need a RH counterpart for LaRoche

  4. natsfan1a - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:00 PM

    Avar, the scroll bar is your friend. :-)Any chance we can skip the posters who will write…

  5. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:04 PM

    May 4, 7pm…CenterField Reserved, RowH 29 & 30Lipty,

  6. Drew - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:04 PM

    I like the insurance in case of a pulled Cammy or a sprained Ankiel.

  7. pdowdy83 - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:05 PM

    Gonat they have already have Morse and Derosa as the RHed counter part for LaRoche. Also Tyler Moore will be in camp as well to get a looksee.The bench could use a guy like Teahen. Maybe you go with Ankiel in CF which leaves Cameron, Flores and either Andres Blanco or Lombardozzi on the bench. Then you have Derosa and Teahen as your RHed and LHed pinch hitters. If you burn 1 early you still have a guy who can play 5 positions (LF/RF/3B/1B/2B) left on your bench in case somebody gets hurt. That might not be the best bench in the world but I think we would have a defensively solid 4th OFer in Cameron/Ankiel whichever isn't starting. Then you have your typical MI guy in Blanco/Lombo and then you have your typical pinch hitters from each side of the plate.Just my 2 cents but I think that is better than last year with Alex Cora and Matt Stairs.

  8. greg - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:13 PM

    i'm all good with this signing, too.the big thing we're missing is really the backup guy who can play both 2B/SS. hairston/cora weren't going to set the world on fire, but they could at least both play both MI spots in a (SS for hairston in a pinch). we don't really have a real backup for desmond (beyond lombo playing 2B and espi shifting, which isn't the best solution).

  9. FS - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:23 PM

    ok so someone is faking dfh21, right?wait, isn't this the guy who hit 3-run homer off of Drew in the game that last 14-innings?

  10. BullpenCatcher - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:31 PM

    Rob Machowiak/Pete Orr Part Deux..ugh! Happy to have him in Syracuse but do not want to see him at Nats Park!

  11. Wally - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:39 PM

    I like the move, too. I agree with Greg that the roster seems mostly set, except for the backup MI spot. Not sure who is out there, but wouldn't be surprised to see a similar deal as this for someone, even if they are just a hedge that Lombo can't hack SS. I thought Cora would have been a decent signing at this point (Keppinger or Theriot would have been better).And possibly a minor league deal for a FA starter, especially if they trade a starter.

  12. NatinBeantown - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:40 PM


  13. pdowdy83 - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:40 PM

    @ Greg – The team did sign Andres Blanco to a minor league deal. If he was good enough to play the role of backup SS/2B for the Rangers for the last 2 years I think he would be okay for us. According to fangraphs he has played above average D at SS over his career. Obviously he isn't an exciting player but I think he might have been brought in so Lombo can play every day at AAA. Similar to how Cameron/Ankiel were brought in so Harper can start the year there as well.

  14. Tcostant - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:44 PM

    I saw Teahen early in his Royals days and he looked like a future star. Someone was willing to pay him $5M this year, so his tools can't be that bad. I love no risk moves like this.

  15. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:44 PM

    Hey, wait … I liked Pete Orr. And this guy is no Pete Orr….But he could fill in for DeRosa while DeRosa is filling in for Zimmerman or LaRoche.

  16. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:54 PM

    Davey is getting his position-flexible LH guys with pop for his bench.dfh21

  17. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    I would definitely rather see lombardozzi rather than blanco as the backup middle infielder. Lombardozzi has more upside and i think he is going to really come into his own this year if he gets a chance.

  18. Drew - Feb 6, 2012 at 10:06 PM

    Thanks, Beantown. Sorry about the Pats. Maybe folks can drown their sorrows in some wicked chowdah.

  19. Binx Bolling - Feb 6, 2012 at 10:10 PM

    Teahan is no Pete Orr. He's a guy who can start and do respectable. He just doesn't have the power to start at third base on a good team. Due to injuries, I would guess he plays plenty of ball in DC this summer and is 50-50 to be on the team on Opening Day.

  20. Section 222 - Feb 6, 2012 at 10:13 PM

    Avar — I'll bet no one will criticize this signing because it doesn't fix the leadoff problem or erase the federal debt. There simply is no downside to a minor league deal. It does seem like we haven't signed anyone who can be the backup at short (with the exception of Lombo in a pinch). I don't see Lombo making the team unless he shows significantly increased hitting ability in ST, which means that Espi will be the spot substitute for Desi with DeRosa or some other utiity infielder filling in at 2nd if needed. That's not an awful result. I'd much rather keep the best possible bench bat who can play 2B and 3B, than a lesser hitting guy who can also play SS.

  21. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    They already have DeRisa and Morse plus Marrerro when he gets back AND Tyler Moore. They don't have reliable left handed hitting outside of Harper. Its a huge hole they almost filled with Fieldet.

  22. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 10:24 PM

    some real low risk high reward moves could be made for Andres torres(16 hr's 42 doubles 27sb's in 2010),john mayberry jr(he hits bombs),chris hiesey(18 hr's in 200 ab's,he is also blocked by stubbs),jon jay,gerrardo parra,and nate schierholtz by the way bourjos has a chronic hip injury,i foresee his average declining drastically when he cant hit infield singles

  23. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 10:27 PM

    Andres Blanco is likely the back-up MI as things stand now. He gloves pretty well and though he lacks an offensive game, he puts the ball in play in a big way (so hit and run and a bunt can get down with this guy to some extent). I think that right now, Lombo starts in Cuse. DeRosa and Teahen cover the corners and 2B in a pinch with Cameron, Ankiel and Bernadina backing up the OF, and the Nats having flexibility to move Morse to 1B and DeRosa to RF for extra RHB against a super tough lefty. It's coming together.dfh21

  24. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 10:55 PM

    I like the chris heisey idea…havent heard it before, but how much would we have to give up for him to only be a short term fix?

  25. lesatcsc - Feb 6, 2012 at 11:30 PM

    If I'm not mistaken DeRosa has also played some SS in the big leagues.

  26. N. Cognito - Feb 6, 2012 at 11:33 PM

    An absolutely Austin Kearnsian signing.

  27. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 11:40 PM

    But it didn't cost them $16.5M.

  28. Anonymous - Feb 6, 2012 at 11:44 PM

    Lombardozzi projects as a starter at this point. Johnson verified this when he said he would have to plan on using him a lot if he made the 25 man out of ST. These left-handed bats are attempts to fill a tremendous void. if LaRoche doesn't pan out there really is only Harper … the only reliable hitter on the left-side. If Lombo proves he can hit from the left-side consistently its going to make ST really interesting. Rendon is a right-handed hitter. The Nats are short in the left-handed hitting starter department.Thus the cattle call of veteran bench players such as Xavier Paul, Ankiel, etc.

  29. Anonymous - Feb 7, 2012 at 12:06 AM

    The only way Lombo starts is if Desmond does not, and that is not likely to happen any time soon.

  30. greg - Feb 7, 2012 at 12:25 AM

    i totally forgot about blanco, thanks for the reminder.and while derosa may have played some SS in the majors, so has morse. i really don't think we want to be in a position where either of them is asked to do it again.

  31. greg - Feb 7, 2012 at 3:10 AM

    pretty sure heisey is penciled in as the starting LF for cinci, so i doubt he's available. especially since it looks like they're "going for it" the next two seasons before votto leaves.torres is the mets starting CF. mayberry is, for now, the phillies starter in LF (unless nix beats him out). brown is likely to start in the minors (or so i've read). jay is the starting CF in st louis, don't think they're interested in moving him right now. schierholtz is the likely starter in RF for san fran. unless they keep belt and move huff to RF. i don't know how keen SF would be to trade him. but he doesn't have much power and doesn't play CF. parra could be available. not sure if they're looking to trade him.

  32. Sec 3, My Sofa - Feb 7, 2012 at 3:20 AM

    kinda quiet… Yeah. Too quiet.I don't like it.

  33. SouthSreetSlugger - Feb 7, 2012 at 5:47 AM

    I want to know if Mike Rizzo is talking to Brian Sabean about what it would take to get Gary Brown in a Nats uniform. He seems to profile as exactly the player we need to fill out the roster as a perennial contender.I'm thinking something like Brian Goodwin + Steve Lombardozzi. Maybe Brian Goodwin + Sammy Solis would be more realistic. I'd even throw in a third player if we felt healthy at the position. It's useless to keep depth in the minors if you they don't fit on your big-league club and you have holes that can be filled…

  34. baseballswami - Feb 7, 2012 at 11:37 AM

    Good morning — that number up in the corner sure looks good! Live baseball, coming your way soon. Anyone tune in for the nats classic game on masn last night? Shairon Martis was our ace on the mound, folks. The line up had Willie Harris and Will Nieves. Not even 2 years ago — of course Adam Dunn tore it up offensively. My how times change around here.

  35. natsfan1a - Feb 7, 2012 at 1:44 PM

    Good morning, swami. It sure does look good, and the new ST post looks even better. Didn't see the game rerun. I keep forgetting that they are being broadcast.





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