This past Friday the Washington Nationals avoided arbitration with Jordan Zimmermann, Ian Desmond, Drew Storen, Wilson Ramos, and Jerry Blevins. Zimmermann and Desmond signed two year deals, while the other three players stuck with one year contracts.
The Washington Nationals have many players who appear to be set up for major contract extensions in the new future. These players include the recently signed Zimmermann and Desmond, as well as young stars Bryce Harper, Stephen Strasburg, and Anthony Rendon. The Nationals must allocate their money wisely in the short term, so they can maintain their most talented players in the long term.
It was rumored that Zimmermann could have been traded if he did not reach an extension with the Nationals. Thankfully for Washington, that is no longer the case. Zimmermann will be with the club for at least two more years, and hopefully within this time period a long term deal can be established. Zimmermann is one of the most talented middle of the rotation pitchers in the league, and he has proven to be a valuable asset throughout his time with Washington.
Desmond’s signing also provides some reassurance for the Nationals infield. Desmond does not appear to be trying to break the bank, as he has previously stated that he wants a fair deal for both sides. He signed a two year deal worth $17.5 million, which does seem to fit Desmond’s desire for a fair deal for both the Nationals and himself. Similarly to Zimmermann, the Nationals hope to sign Desmond to a longer contract in the future, but they have solved these issues for the time being.
The Nationals now have two arbitration eligible players who remain unsigned, Tyler Clippard and recently acquired starter Doug Fister. The Nationals hope to sign these players and avoid arbitration hearings all together, and at the moment, they seem to be on their way to doing just that.