ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 03: Michael Bourn #24 of the Atlanta Braves scores on a sacrifice fly against the Colorado Rockies at Turner Field on September 3, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
The Washington Nationals impressive organizational depth will provide them with a significant amount of flexibility this winter when it comes to a decision on whether or not they retain first baseman Adam LaRoche and if they decide to target free agent outfielder Michael Bourn, reports Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports:
Consider first baseman Adam LaRoche. Sure, the Nationals would like to re-sign him, but LaRoche, 32, could decline his end of a $10 million mutual option. As a free agent coming off a 30-homer, 100-RBI season, or something very close to it, he likely would command a three-year deal in the $33 million to $36 million range.
At one point, the Nats were viewed as the favorites to sign Bourn as a free agent; they might not view such a move as necessary now.
Rosenthal notes that the club could stick with current center fielder Bryce Harper for another year or two until projected long-term solution Brian Goodwin reaches the majors. The 34th overall pick in the 2011 MLB Draft, Goodwin has hit .280/.384/.469 with twenty-six doubles, fourteen home runs and eighteen stolen bases in twenty-five attempts between low- and Double-A this season.
Should the Nationals keep LaRoche/pursue Bourn this winter?