Since time immemorial, Washington Nationals general managers have craved a centerfielder who could lead off. Why GMs Jim Bowden and Mike Rizzo were so insistent for those two skillsets combined is a mystery that may never be fully understood. That led to experiments with the likes of Nook Logan, Lastings Milledge and Nyjer Morgan. Now, Rizzo believes he has acquired the player once thought to be an impossible dream. Denard Span (Baseball Reference) is coming to D.C.
Span, previously with the Minnesota Twins, was actually born in the nation’s capital(Nationals Journal, The Post) when his mother went labor earlier than expected. Speaking his mother, he hit her with a foul ball in spring training once (Nats Enquirer). She was fine (twinsbaseball.com).
Naturally, the newest Nat will be known as D-SPAN. It is probably only a matter of time before Brian Lamb is asked to comment.
Back to the field, the ramifications of Span’s arrival are many and let’s just say, if you were looking forward to Michael Morse and Adam LaRoche playing together again, you will probably be disappointed. Morse won’t be a starting outfielder with Jayson Werth and Bryce Harper manning the corners and Span in center. That means he has to supplant LaRoche at first or be sent elsewhere. LaRaoche is unsigned at this point, but the Nats still want him. This, and what losing another pitching prospect in Alex Meyer, means is explained well here: Ripple effects from the Alex Meyer-Denard Span trade (Nationals Journal, The Post). It seems like a solid trade that screams the Nats are in “WIN NOW” mode which is a pretty good sign.
Rizzo: Span will “come into his own” in Washington – CSN Washington
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