Nats pursue several options to replace Tanner Roark

Brian Tinsman
December 13, 2018 - 9:51 pm

Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports


Trading Tanner Roark for a youngster with a live arm seems like a move that will seem genius in retrospect. For the time being, however, it creates an immediate need in the Washington Nationals' rotation.

That's why the Nats spent Thursday at the Winter Meetings kicking the tires on available free agents, including losing out on Lance Lynn, according to Chelsea Janes:

Lynn sports a career 3.57 ERA across seven seasons, predominantly for the St. Louis Cardinals (last year with Minnesota and the Yankees). He required Tommy John surgery during the 2016 season and made his way back last year, eyeing 2018 for his first healthy season since 2015. He chose to stay in the American League.

Lynn signed with the Rangers for three years, $30 million. So the Nats will turn their attention elsewhere, per Ken Rosenthal:

Miley is a clear step down from Roark or Lynn, sporting a 4.26 ERA and bouncing around the American League in recent years. He might embrace a return to the NL, where he has a winning record and 3.65 ERA.

Sanchez wasn't just good against the Nats last year--he had one of his best years in 2017 at age 34. He pitched 136.2 innings for the Braves and had a 2.83 ERA, his lowest since his rookie campaign in 2006. Whether the Nats think he can duplicate that in 2018 will probably be a deciding factor in their pursuit.

The Nats already have a three-headed monster on paper, trotting out Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg and Patrick Corbin, signed earlier this offseason. Behind them, the certainty drops off quickly, especially after Roark's departure. If the team was forced to only consider in-house options, it's possible the roles would fall to Joe Ross and Erick Fedde.

Obviously, Mike Rizzo wants some veteran options, and the team is shopping for short-term value.


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