Adam LaRoche, Sean Burnett decline options

Brad White

Nationals first baseman Adam LaRoche and left-hander Sean Burnett became free agents today when they declined their portion of their mutual options for 2013.

Washington Nationals first baseman Adam LaRoche and left-hander Sean Burnett became free agents today when they declined their portion of their mutual options for the 2013 season, reports Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post:

First baseman Adam LaRoche and left-handed reliever Sean Burnett became free agents this morning when both declined their half of mutual options for the 2013 season, multiple people familiar with the transactions said.

Burnett’s option was for $3.5 million while LaRoche’s totaled $10 million. The moves are not surprising, as both players believe they can obtain a multi-year deal on the open market.

The duo will become available to other major league clubs this weekend now that they’ve declined their options, but they have both said that they hope to re-sign with the Nationals.

Following an extremely disappointing first season in D.C., LaRoche turned in an impressive 2012 campaign. He hit .271/.343/.510 with 35 doubles and 33 home runs over 571 at-bats. The 32-year-old owns a career line of .268/.338/.482 over nine seasons in the majors.

Burnett has been extremely effective as a left-handed reliever out of the Nationals’ bullpen. Over the past three seasons the 30-year-old has maintained an ERA of 2.81 with 7.7 strikeouts per nine innings and 2.9 walks per nine innings.

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