Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post reports that the Nationals have activated starter Max Scherzer and outfielder Jayson Werth from the 10-day disabled list. Outfielders Andrew Stevenson and Rafael Bautista were optioned to Triple-A Syracuse. Infielder Stephen Drew was transferred to the 60-day disabled list.
Scherzer, 33, was placed on the 10-day DL retroactive to August 15 with inflammation on the left side of his neck. The right-hander returns with a 12-5 record, a 2.25 ERA, and a 220/39 K/BB ratio in 160 1/3 innings. Scherzer will start on Monday night against the Marlins.
Werth, 38, has been out since early June with a left foot contusion, suffered when he fouled a ball off of his foot. Prior to the injury, he was batting .262/.367/.446 with eight home runs and 18 RBI in 196 plate appearances.
Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.
That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.
Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.