Washington Nationals rumors reveal a contract has been offered to Yoenis Cespedes. These Nationals rumors indicate that the Cespedes deal is for five years, making it longer than anything the New York Mets had offered the All-Star outfielder. A report from baseball analyst Ken Rosenthal states that the deal on the table is for five seasons, but that a dollar amount has not yet been revealed. Ronsenthal also reports that the maximum number of years that the Mets offered Cespedes was three.
This is a big deal for the Nationals, because it would net the team someone to hit behind Bryce Harper in the lineup and add additional power to an improving batting order. During the 2015 MLB season, the Nationals finished in second place in the National League East. The team underperformed for a majority of the season, slipping to 83-79 and failing to reach the postseason. This was despite spending a lot of money to acquire ace starting pitcher Max Scherzer. The offense was a problem that might have just been addressed in a big way.
While these Washington Nationals rumors don’t confirm that Yoenis Cespedes is ready to take the deal, indications are that it is only a matter of time until he signs it. That does leave the door open for another franchise to top the offer on the table, but it could be unlikely at this point of the MLB offseason. Other teams that have been linked to him in free agency include the New York Mets, Detroit Tigers, Chicago White Sox, and New York Yankees. He could have been a good fit for any of these five franchises, but it seems only the Nationals have offered a full five-year deal.
In four major league seasons, Yoenis Cespedes has played in 575 games for four different teams (Oakland Athletics, Boston Red Sox, Detroit Tigers, and New York Mets). In 2,435 plate appearances, he has a .271 batting average, a .319 on-base percentage, and a .805 OPS. That includes 251 extra base hits, 367 RBIs, 334 runs scored, and 37 stolen bases. Cespedes has been named to one All-Star team and won the Gold Glove Award during the 2015 MLB season. He also finished second in the 2012 Rookie of the Year voting for the American League.
Cespedes likely earned a huge pay raise during just his final two months of the 2015 MLB season. After the New York Mets acquired him from the Detroit Tigers, he appeared in 57 games down the stretch and helped the team ease into the postseason. During that time in New York, he posted a .287 batting average, .942 OPS, 17 home runs, 44 RBIs, and 39 runs scored. Some of those numbers even came at the expense of the Nationals.
These Washington Nationals rumors directly affect not just his possible new team, but also the Mets and fantasy baseball owners. One of the reasons the Nationals could be willing to offer extra money and years is to keep Cespedes from signing with the Mets again. By adding him to a roster that already has National League MVP Bryce Harper, it might even increase his value in 2016 fantasy baseball drafts. A lineup with Harper and Cespedes certainly looks good enough on paper to contend for a National League title as well.
More details about this contract offer from the Nationals and whether Cespedes thinks that it includes enough money and incentives will likely come out as the weekend approaches. What these Washington Nationals rumors do prove, though, is that the team is extremely serious about putting a team on the field that can compete for a World Series in 2016 and beyond.
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