Big news here as the baseball world continues its migration to Orlando, Florida for the Winter Meetings.
According to MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, free agent outfielder Jayson Werth is close to agreeing to a contract with the Nationals.
Zolecki has not heard any particulars on the terms of the deal, but it’s sure to be a big one. Werth is represented by super agent Scott Boras, who usually recommends that his top-tier clients wait until the later part of the offseason to sign. Unless, of course, they’re overwhelmed by big time money.
Werth batted .296/.388/.532 with 27 homers and 85 RBI over 156 games for the Phillies in 2010 and should do well for several years in D.C. The Nats probably overpaid for him, disappointed by Adam Dunn’s departure and inspired by Ryan Zimmerman’s recent comments about the direction of the organization, but a deal with Werth represents a small coup for the Washington front office. They’ve courted many top free agents since moving to the nation’s capital and been spurned by pretty much all of them.
Werth wearing the Curly W, that’s cute.
UPDATE: Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com says the deal is done.
UPDATE II: Jon Heyman of SI.com reports that Werth will get a seven-year deal. Yikes.
UPDATE III: According to Rosenthal, the seven-year contract will be worth $126 million. That’s an unbelievable amount of money — more than the Cardinals paid a younger Matt Holliday last winter.
Free agent left-hander Wade Miley is among several offseason targets for the Twins, according to a report from Darren Wolfson of KSTP. Miley’s $12 million option was declined by the Orioles back in November, and while he’s expected to attract another major league deal in 2018, he hasn’t exactly been highly sought after this offseason.
The 31-year-old lefty finished his second campaign with the Orioles in 2017, producing an 8-15 record in 32 starts and ranking second-to-last among all AL starters with a 5.61 ERA, 5.3 BB/9 and 8.1 SO/9 in 157 1/3 innings. Even taking Miley’s undeniable durability into account — he remained healthy for the bulk of the season and completed his sixth straight year with 30+ starts — his declining value and career-worst numbers may lower his price tag as the 2018 season approaches.
Wolfson notes that the Twins have engaged in “regular dialogue” with Miley’s agent this winter, but he’s far from the only starting pitcher they have their eye on. Right-handers Yu Darvish, Lance Lynn, Alex Cobb and Chris Tillman are still on their radar, among several others, and club owner Jim Pohlad said Saturday that he was “totally on board” with the idea of signing a big-name free agent like Darvish or another available starter. “There are some interesting names and some interesting opportunities there,” Pohlad told a crowd at TwinsFest. “I’m as intrigued by it as anybody and attracted to it as anybody.”