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Nats Sign Daniel Murphy: Why Not Have Just Kept Escobar And Sign Denard Span?

Daniel Murphy has a career 3 Slash of .288/.331/.424. The Nats signed him to a 3 YR deal worth $37.5 MIL - that will also cost the Nationals the 17th overall pick in the 2016 Draft next year. Some say that pick is worth $8 to $10 MIL. If this is the case, why wouldn't the Nats just have kept Yunel Escobar for $7 MIL over the next 2 years, and then sign Denard Span to the 3 Year deal that Murphy just signed. The Nats are better off today than they were yesterday, but I have to ask the question whether or not they did the right moves.

Daniel Murphy has a career 3 Slash of .288/.331/.424. The Nats signed him to a 3 YR deal worth $37.5 MIL – that will also cost the Nationals the 17th overall pick in the 2016 Draft next year. Some say that pick is worth $8 to $10 MIL. If this is the case, why wouldn’t the Nats just have kept Yunel Escobar for $7 MIL over the next 2 years, and then sign Denard Span to the 3 Year deal that Murphy just signed. The Nats are better off today than they were yesterday, but I have to ask the question whether or not they did the right moves.

Chuck Booth (Owner/Lead  Analyst) 

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The Nats finally got their First Baseman they needed in the upcoming year with a 3 YRS/$37.5 MIL deal with former Met Daniel Murphy.  It will cost the cash, plus the 17th overall pick in the 2016 as compensation for signing him.

It has been an offseason that has seen GM Mike Rizzo obtain several Bullpen pieces for the roster next year.

In the end here, I am not sure Washington wouldn’t have been better off just keeping Yunel Escobar, and signing Denard Span for the same deal that Murphy just got.

So I guess Anthony Rendon will leadoff for the Nationals in 2016?

New Manager Dusty Baker will probably see Bryce Harper move into the Starting Centerfielder position, play Jayson Werth in Left Field, and then use Clint Robinson and Michael Taylor as a platoon in RF. 

Taylor could also play CF, with Harper in Right, but the idea is have the reigning NL MVP not have to crash into fences down the foul pole line.

Yunel Escobar served notice he can still play at a high level in the MLB with a .314/.375/.415 3 Slash last year for Washington. I really didn't like the deal they pulled off to trade him to the Angeles considering he would have just cost the club $7 MIL per year over the next 2 year, and can play all 3 positions in the Infield except 1st Base.

Yunel Escobar served notice he can still play at a high level in the MLB with a .314/.375/.415 3 Slash last year for Washington. I really didn’t like the deal they pulled off to trade him to the Angeles considering he would have just cost the club $7 MIL per year over the next 2 years, and can play all 3 positions in the Infield except 1st Base.  He was traded for Reliever Trevor Gott and Minor League Michael Brady.

Span hit .292/.345/.404 for his career with Washington, Murphy has a lifetime 3 Slash of .288/.341/.424.  Span has more speed, and better defense – while Murphy has been a Doubles machine and has been very durable.

Now that the Nats have done the two separate deals we must dissect what this means.

Murphy could also see some time as a OF – and at the hot corner.

Perhaps the awesome NLDS and NLCS performance that Murphy carried out this past October tipped the favor for Washington to sign the player to the 3 year contract. Murphy clubbed 7 HRs and 11 RBI in his 1st 9 games of the playoffs this year versus the Dodgers and Cubs - that included a 6 game HR streak. Washington will hope he can bring his playoff magic to the District - where they should be in the World Series Title hunt for the duration of his 3 year contract.

Perhaps the awesome NLDS and NLCS performance that Murphy carried out this past October tipped the favor for Washington to sign the player to the 3 year contract. Murphy clubbed 7 HRs and 11 RBI in his 1st 9 games of the playoffs this year versus the Dodgers and Cubs – that included a 6 game HR streak. Washington will hope he can bring his playoff magic to the District – where they should be in the World Series Title hunt for the duration of his 3 year contract.

Washington has Michael A. Taylor and young Shortstop prospect Trea Turner as players that could determine where Murphy plays defensively for the duration of his 3 year pact.

One would have to figure Baker will try Rendon as the leadoff hitter, or maybe Jayson Werth at the top.  Murphy looks to be a great #2 hitter option. 

Bryce Harper as the 3rd batter, Ryan Zimmerman as the cleanup man, Clint Robinson and Werth could trade-off as the #5 and #6 batters.

Wilson Ramos could hit 7th – and Trea Turner or Danny Espinosa would hit 8th. 

I would have even been in favor of the club having jettisoned Espinosa and keep Escobar, who has a 3 Slash of .281/.350/.385 career.  Perhaps better numbers than both Nats Shortstops will put up in 2016 and 2017.

The Nationals were 36 - 25 in the games that Denard Span appeared in for the 2015 year. He is going to help some offense as a legitimate leadoff man in 2016 who can play a decent CF. HIs pending departure will be felt significantly more if Jayson Werth has another injury riddled year - or if Michael Taylor can't take the next step in 2016.

The Nationals were 36 – 25 in the games that Denard Span appeared in for the 2015 year. He is going to help some offense as a legitimate leadoff man in 2016 who can play a decent CF. HIs pending departure will be felt significantly more if Jayson Werth has another injury riddled year – or if Michael Taylor can’t take the next step in 2016.

*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com and their partners***

I am happy to be back at the helm of the MLB Reports, after completing my record 224 Games in the MLB Trip in 2015.  It was the 4th time I have seen all 30 MLB Parks since 2008. 

During that time away I was fortunate to do 100 Media Interviews and be named the Baseball Blogger Alliance President.

Interview on CSN Philly during the month of July.

Interview on CSN Philly during the month of July.

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Posted on December 25, 2015, in The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Nats Sign Daniel Murphy: Why Not Have Just Kept Escobar And Sign Denard Span?.

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