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Zim: "It’s where I’ve always wanted to be"

Feb 26, 2012, 8:37 PM EDT

US Presswire photo
Ryan Zimmerman works out this morning after agreeing to a six-year extension.

VIERA, Fla. — Surrounded by more than a dozen teammates, his manager, his general manager and his agent, Ryan Zimmerman sat down this afternoon to take questions about his new long-term extension and made it abundantly clear how comforting it is to know he'll be playing in Washington for at least eight more years.

"It's where I want to be," he said. "It's where I've always wanted to be."

The "Face of the Franchise" since he was drafted in June 2005, Zimmerman ensured he will retain that title for quite some time. His six-year, $100 million extension — which kicks in after his current deal expires following the 2013 season — guarantees he'll be wearing a Nationals uniform through at least 2019.

The two sides spent nearly a year negotiating this contract, at times getting close only to have a sticking point prevent it from getting done. A major hurdle, however, was crossed yesterday when the NationalsRead more ยป

  1. Anonymous - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:40 PM

    Was there an official press conference ( sounds like there was) and will there be video?

  2. VTmikey - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    So glad to have him on board for the long term! GYFNG!

  3. bdrube - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:43 PM

    Sweet. Our season ticket group had its draft today (where we divvy up 6 81-game packages) and this was by far the main topic of conversation. It very much heightened the anticipation of the upcoming season that always comes on draft day. :)

  4. natsfan1a - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:44 PM

    Loved this: "I've always been comfortable here," he said. "I think going to a new place would be weird for me. I know the person who lets me into the parking lot. I know the people who watch the family room. The cooks. Everyone. It's not just about baseball. It's about everyone that I've met here, everyone that's helped to get to where I am today."

  5. Anonymous - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    "I've always been comfortable here," he said. "I think going to a new place would be weird for me. I know the person who lets me into the parking lot. I know the people who watch the family room. The cooks. Everyone. It's not just about baseball. It's about everyone that I've met here, everyone that's helped to get to where I am today."Thank God he's never met JayB.

  6. JaneB - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:49 PM

    I love that so many team members were there for the conference, too.

  7. Anonymous - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:52 PM

    Was there an official press conference ( sounds like there was) and will there be video?Angelos the sulker won't permit it. Had to make due with Pete Kerzel's twitvid's. Still, all things considered Pete is putting out beyond maximum effort and he is an Orioles fan! Its a shame he has to work for the Angel'O's.

  8. Anonymous - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:56 PM

    Thank God he's never met JayB.Someone who wants to win as badly as Zim does? I think he would feel more than a bit vindicated in much of what he has stated about what he (Zim) wanted to see before he would consider signing an extension.Zim has said some of the same things … just in a nicer less controversial way. In JayB's case he just doesn't believe in Player Development nor the minors. Why? Well, until this past year there really has been almost NO progress with only a couple notable exceptions and some of those are still question marks. I think the trade with Bill Beane spoke volumes about that … however I do wish Rizzo had stuck to his guns and kept Tommy Milone.

  9. HHover - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:09 PM

    For those interested in such things, Dave Cameron has a nice piece up at fangraphs, using the performance of comparable 3B at similar ages, to judge that the Nats "paid a pretty fair price for a good player."Some folks around here might use more superlative adjectives for Zim, but it still boils down to a positive evaluation of the deal.http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/comps-for-ryan-zimmermans-extension/

  10. Mark Zuckerman - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:12 PM

    We had our camera crew here and will have video of both the press conference and Kelli Johnson's one-on-one interview with Zimmerman on CSNwashington.com later today.

  11. Jayson Werth - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:15 PM

    When do I get my extension?

  12. NatsLady - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:24 PM

    So basically, they added a "poison pill" and a verbal agreement that Zim won't be traded. Seems like all sides were "creative" and co-operative on this one, given their goals. How is it Angelos can prevent the Nats from televising a press conference? We need to get out from under his thumb!!!

  13. Sunderland - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:27 PM

    NatsLady, just cause an Anon, or anyone for that matter, posts that Angelos forbids it, it don't make it true.

  14. baseballswami - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:28 PM

    NatsLady – if Mark asks you to sign a long-term deal, will you do it?

  15. Gonat - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/comps-for-ryan-zimmermans-extension/Here is the most neutral opinion you will probably find on the Zim deal. I also think that like overpaying Werth that even though they slightly overpaid Zim, the benefits will be realized when the Nats consider extending players like Michael Morse and Jordan Zimmermann.The one guy I want to see the Nats do a Evan Longoria with is Bryce Harper. Its the reason you have to wait the 21 days with Harper to tie him up at least thru 2018.This team core really looks amazing and almost all the press is positive. The comments Jerry Hairston made about Jordan Zimmermann and saying Wilson Ramos in 2 years will be the best catcher in the MLB should really give much hope to Zim talking about the World Series.

  16. Anonymous - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:39 PM

    Then new clarion call: #WSinDC12.

  17. MicheleS - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:46 PM

    Soo happy that we have RZ locked up! Now Lets play some ball!!! Tired of the off season.. Need Baseball!!!

  18. Sunderland - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:47 PM

    There's got to be a great vibe in Nats camp in Vierra right now. I bet Davey is too excited to sleep.

  19. Anonymous - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:49 PM

    @SunderlandYour comment makes me wonder if Rizzo purposely waited until everyone was back in camp to do this deal. It's a great motivator.

  20. NatsLady - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:58 PM

    Sunderland, this is what Nationals Enquirer posted:Thanks to Peter Angelos and the good folks at MASN, National fans had to rely on Twitter, and grainy Twitpics like the above, to get a feel for Ryan Zimmerman's press conference Sunday afternoon in Viera. Better than nothing.We especially love the photo below, in which Zim's mates represented, and not one but two Beast Mode t-shirts made appearances. (Photos by @NationalsPR)

  21. NatsLady - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    Swami: Huh? Long-term deal for what?

  22. NatsLady - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:06 PM

    Reviewing the fangraphs article– on stats and projections the deal looks positive. Then you factor in fan and player goodwill, along with Zim's character and "leadership," and I think we've got a winner here.

  23. Anonymous - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:10 PM

    Bless you , Mark, looking forward to the video of the press conference.If this doesn't give you the major league warm and fuzzies, with over a dozen of his teammates there, then, well, I guess there's no hope for you as a Nats fan.

  24. NattyNation - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:17 PM

    Very telling that 15 team mates came to his presser-shows how much respect he has earned. Bryce was reportedly there too.

  25. baseballswami - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:19 PM

    NatsLady – to post on this site long-term as the face of the posters, of course!

  26. NatsLady - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:21 PM

    Aw, Swami–(blushing)–that's so nice of you to say… But I've been known to have controversial postings… oooooo, ellipses… :) :)

  27. dj in Fl. - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:24 PM

    Here are some pictures of today at SThttp://home.comcast.net/~djinfl/site/

  28. MicheleS - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:32 PM

    DJ in FL..Love the Pipo picture!!! Ross still needs to gain weight.. we need to feed that boy.

  29. MicheleS - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:34 PM

    If you go to the CSN website, Mark's article up there has the News conference embedded in it.

  30. sm13 - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:36 PM

    I'm voting for a long-term NatsLady contract. Pay the gal!!It's great that Ryan's teamates came out to support him — it reinforces his view of the Nats "family". I wonder how sabremetrics tries to quantify team chemistry, because the Nats chemistry seems to be off the charts? Add today to yesterday's article about the way Davey is running camp as a team unit and you know we've got something special here.

  31. fpcsteve's question - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:37 PM

    Off-point but important question (especially for those of you outside of the DC Metro area): What do I do to watch Nats games on Dish Network? What's the procedure? Any of you in the Midwest in general or Nebraska in particular would be a big help with info on this. And how much will it cost? Will I get to see all of their games? You guys in the DC area have me spooked because of what you have said about MASN. Thanks. fpcsteve

  32. Gonat - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:37 PM

    Anonymous said… @SunderlandYour comment makes me wonder if Rizzo purposely waited until everyone was back in camp to do this deal. It's a great motivator. February 26, 2012 4:49 PM ______________________________I would say that it has always been this target of getting it done before Spring Training started and the face-to-face meeting was key to get it completed. I'm just glad they didn't BS us and wait several weeks to announce it like they did in 2009.I was never worried as I felt both sides wanted it done. The hate words that our own Nats fans were tweeting was unfortunate. Calling Ted Lerner a cheap bastard is a low blow and then some of the idiots who said they weren't going to buy tix and then the idiots saying Zim would be a NY Yankee in 2 years. I knew the deal was going to get done once Ladson tweeted Thursday @washingnats: "There is a good chance a deal may not get done between Ryan Zimmerman and the #Nats. #MLB"

  33. MicheleS - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:44 PM

    fcpsteve..Check with your dish provider and see if they give you the MLB Package. It costs about $200 for the entire season (or that's what it costs on Verizon Fios) and you see all games for all teams not just the Nats.

  34. fpcsteve - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:48 PM

    Thanks, MicheleS… fpcsteve

  35. NatsLady - Feb 26, 2012 at 10:58 PM

    Two for Toyota and two for the lawyers–finally got the video. Thanks, Mark, it was worth it.fcpsteve–if you have a good internet connection, it might be cheaper to get the MLB internet package for about $120. You will be blacked out for local teams, but not for the Nats if you are in Nebraska. Also you can watch the games on all devices, not just on TV (and nowadays, you can hook your computer to your TV).

  36. natsfan1a - Feb 26, 2012 at 11:09 PM

    Video in the new post as well.

  37. natsfan1a - Feb 26, 2012 at 11:17 PM

    Second the thanks for the pics, dj, and I've bookmarked your photos site. Agree with MichelleS re. the Pipo pic, though there's something to be said for the Zim jersey as well. Last but not least, doesn't look to me like they brought enough chips and dip for everybody. Need to work on that one. :-)

  38. fpcsteve - Feb 26, 2012 at 11:21 PM

    Thanks, NatsLady. fpcsteve

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