Nationals to meet with Brandon Webb at Winter Meetings

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The Cubs aren’t the only team with heavy interest in veteran right-hander Brandon Webb.

According to’s Bill Ladson, the Nationals plan to meet with Webb’s representatives at baseball’s annual Winter Meetings in early December.

Webb hasn’t appeared in a major league game since the first week of the 2009 season because of chronic shoulder problems and did not show good velocity in a couple of throwing sessions this fall.

But he should come cheap, and that’s attractive to clubs in a weathered economy.

Webb, 31, registered a 3.30 ERA and 1.20 WHIP over 34 starts in 2008 — his last full season.  He won the National League Cy Young Award back in 2006 with a 3.10 ERA, 1.13 WHIP and 178 strikeouts in 235 innings.  The Nats, Cubs and the other interested teams are hoping that he has some of that magic left.

Jeff Samardzija to undergo MRI on right shoulder

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Giants starter Jeff Samardzija will undergo an MRI on his ailing right shoulder, according to NBC Sports Bay Area. The right-hander struggled in a minor league game on Wednesday, surrendering a pair of home runs and hitting a batter. Overall this spring, Samardzija has given up 15 runs (13 earned) on 17 hits (six homers) and seven walks with seven strikeouts in 11 innings.

This may mean Samardzija won’t be ready for the start of the regular season. Derek Holland would likely replace Samardzija in the rotation. Holland had been competing for the No. 5 spot in the Giants’ rotation.

Samardzija led the National League in losses last season with 15, also posting a 4.42 ERA with a 205/32 K/BB ratio in a league-high 207 2/3 innings. Since becoming a starter, Samardzija has been able to avoid injury, making 32 or 33 starts in each of the last five seasons.