Prince Fielder is the last real superstar on the free agent market this year, and the current round of rumors still swirl mostly around the Nationals. Fielder's market took a significant hit when both the Yankees and Red Sox were out of the running before it began, the Angels made the mega-deal for Albert Pujols, the Cubs traded for Anthony Rizzo, and the Mariners apparently only have a few million left to spend this off-season. That brings us to late last night, when the Nats ownership, Ted and Mark Lerner, met with Fielder's agent, Scott Boras.
Adam Kilgore of the The Washington Post is reporting that the Nationals are still aggressively trying to sign Fielder, despite Bill Ladson's report that there's little chance it happens. This is conjecture on my part, but Ladson may just be towing the team line to bring down the price. The other Fielder news coming out of the evening is that Boras is suggesting that the slugger will sign well before Spring Training -- but implies he isn't afraid to take negotiations all the way to the edge:
Nationals still pursuing Prince Fielder, met today with agent Scott Boras - Adam Kilgore | The Washington Post
"The Nationals’ push for Fielder continued when Nationals principal owners Ted and Mark Lerner met with Scott Boras, Fielder’s high-profile agent, at the owners’ meetings in Arizona this evening, the person said."
Nationals unlikely to sign Prince Fielder at current price - Bill Ladson | MLB.com
"The source indicated that Fielder's price must come down in order for the team to think about acquiring his services. The Nats are not willing to give Fielder anything close to the 10-year, $240 million contract the Angels gave first baseman Albert Pujols."
Scott Boras: Prince Fielder will sign before spring's first pitch - Barry Bloom | MLB.com
"Certainly we're going to have him signed well in advance of Spring Training," said Scott Boras, who was at the owners' meetings on Wednesday to discuss contracts for his various clients. "I can't give you the exact date. These things take some time. That's why we have January and early February. Spring Training doesn't start until late February."
When Are the Washington Nationals Going After Their Guy? - MLB Daily Dish
"I know the Washington Nationals and GM Mike Rizzo are playing Hot Stove poker at the moment as they feign satisfaction with Adam LaRoche and their current 1B situation, but let's be serious. Who's buying that bluff? Scott Boras most likely isn't. The Nats will need to open up the wallet, but it could end up being well worth it."