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Nationals, Braves could pursue Matt Wieters

The Braves and Nats could both pursue the catcher on the open market.

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Orioles catcher Matt Wieters will hit free agency for the first time this winter, and two NL East teams are emerging as potential fits. According to a recent report from Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com, the Braves and Nationals may jump into the sweepstakes for Wieters this winter.

Rosenthal opines that Atlanta would make sense because Wieters owns a house in Atlanta and attended Georgia Tech, but the team does have a legitimate need behind the plate. A.J. Pierzynski is a free agent after the season, and Christian Bethancourt has not lived up to his potential in parts of three major league seasons.

Washington may jump in the Wieters race due to agent Scott Boras' strong relationship with the team (he represents Nationals stars Max Scherzer, Bryce Harper, Stephen Strasburg and others), as well as a potential willingness to upgrade over Wilson Ramos. Washington is not expected to re-sign shortstop Ian Desmond this winter and will likely have the flexibility to add another high-paid free agent on the open market.

The Orioles are expected to try to re-sign Wieters, but first baseman Chris Davis is also a free agent and may become the team's top priority. It is unlikely that Baltimore would have the room to re-sign both stars, so Wieters could find himself looking elsewhere for work.