Earlier this week there were several reports about the Nationals pursuing Twins center fielder Denard Span and yesterday Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com wrote that they might even be willing to give up closer Drew Storen to get something done.
Not so fast, according to Bill Ladson of MLB.com, who quotes “a baseball source” as saying the Nationals “are not willing to trade Storen for Span.”
Which is probably good news for the Twins anyway, because trading a 27-year-old center fielder with good leadoff skills and plus range for a 70-inning pitcher–albeit a very good, young, and cheap one in Storen–isn’t the greatest idea. It’s probably a moot point anyway, as Span has been on the disabled list for two months with a concussion.
Washington is definitely in the market for a long-term solution in center field, with various rumors linking them to Michael Bourn, B.J. Upton, Peter Bourjos, and others in addition to Span.
The Orioles have re-signed infielder Pedro Alvarez to a minor league deal, per a report from Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports. The deal guarantees Alvarez $1 million if he makes the 40-man roster and another $2 million in potential performance bonuses. The team has yet to confirm the deal.
This will be Alvarez’s third year with the Orioles. After posting decent numbers in 2016, the 31-year-old was relegated to the minors for the majority of the 2017 season and saw only 14 games at the big league level. He finished the year with an underwhelming .239/.294/.442 batting line and 26 home runs through 595 plate appearances for Triple-A Norfolk.
Alvarez is expected to split his time between first base and DH this spring, and MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli notes that he’s unlikely to experiment with another outfield role. While he isn’t too far removed from his last productive season in the majors, the veteran infielder will function purely as insurance for first baseman Chris Davis and designated hitter Mark Trumbo and will likely begin the season in the minors.