Nationals Likely To Wait Until Next Year To Acquire Center Fielder

Saturday December 31st, 2011

The Washington Nationals may wait until 2013 to acquire their center fielder of the future, according to The Washington Post.

“We see the 2013 free agent class at center field is much stronger than it is for the 2012 season,” Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said in an interview with MLB Network Radio, as transcribed by Adam Kilgore of The Washington Post. We know [Jayson] Werth can handle the center field position. It’s not a perfect world for us. … We recognize that we need a true gliding, defensive, rangy center fielder out there in a perfect world. As far as the 2012 season we’re not going to make a kneejerk reaction and lock ourselves into anything long-term if it doesn’t make sense for us.”

The Nationals have been looking for a potential everyday starting center fielder since trading Nyer Morgan in 2011 after a series of on-the-field behavioral outbursts. It was believed that the Nationals were close to a deal with the Minnesota Twins for outfielder Dernard Span, and they have been often rumored to be interested in Tampa Bay Rays outfielder B.J. Upton. However over the past two years no deal has been made to bring in a full-time centerfielder. Currently the Nationals outfield boast sluggers Mike Morse and Jayson Werth, and as early as next season could also contain star-prospect Bryce Harper.

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