Though Washington is discussing a trade for Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen, the club is also considering Dexter Fowler, Carlos Gomez and Adam Eaton if a deal doesn’t get done, according to FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman.
Ian Desmond is also an option in center field, according to Heyman.
The Nationals seem focused on adding McCutchen, but the club is internally discussing other options. Pittsburgh might opt to keep McCutchen, and Washington may not be open to moving prospect Victor Robles and several pitchers in the deal.
Desmond had success with the Rangers and is likely an intriguing option because he has experience with the Nationals. He also played center field in Texas and could be a comparably inexpensive option.
Eaton will likely be considered because the White Sox have made clear they are open to trading veterans on their roster. Still, Fowler and Gomez might be Washington’s two best outfield options if they’re unable to acquire McCutchen.
Though Fowler is seeking an extensive deal, Fowler is one of the better outfielders on the free agent market. Over 125 games with the Cubs last season, he batted .276/.393/.447 with 13 home runs and 48 RBIs.
Gomez batted .231/.298/.384 with 13 home runs and 53 RBIs over 118 games. However, he batted .276 after being sent to Texas.
There is still a chance the McCutchen trade gets done in the coming days, but the Nationals have a plan should a deal fall through.