Wil Myers

Craig Kimbrel

Report: The Nationals are “hottest” on Padres closer Craig Kimbrel

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The Nationals were reportedly looking at a reunion with Tyler Clippard before the Athletics traded him to the Mets tonight, but there’s a chance they could do something a lot bigger to strengthen the back-end of their bullpen.

According to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, the Nationals are the “hottest” among teams for Padres closer Craig Kimbrel. The team has also reportedly been linked to Reds closer Aroldis Chapman. With that in mind, Rosenthal was told by a friend of Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo that he would “almost bet my house that he will do something big.”

The Nationals already have an All-Star closer with Drew Storen, who has posted a 1.73 ERA and 44/9 K/BB ratio over 36 1/3 innings this season while going 29-for-31 in save chances. However, the bridge to the ninth inning for Washington has been shakier than in previous seasons. If the Nationals were to acquire Kimbrel or Chapman, Storen could be moved back into a set-up role.

Kimbrel, 27, has posted a 2.75 ERA and 55/15 K/BB ratio over 39 1/3 innings this season while compiling 29 saves. He’s owed $24 million from 2016-2017 and his contract includes a $13 million club option or a $1 million buyout for 2018. It would be a costly acquisition, but he’s still one of the top closers in the game and the Nationals have the kind of payroll to bring him aboard.

Interestingly, Rosenthal also confirmed that the Padres asked the Nationals about prospect shortstop Trea Turner in talks for Kimbrel. They were shot down. Of course, the Padres dealt Turner to the Nationals as a player to be named later in the three-team Wil Myers trade.

Wil Myers two weeks ahead of schedule, could resume baseball activities in 4-6 weeks

Wil Myers
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Padres outfielder Wil Myers could resume baseball activities in four to six weeks, a couple of weeks sooner than the original timetable of six to eight weeks suggested, per Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune. Myers had surgery on his left wrist to remove a bone spur earlier this month. He had his cast removed on Saturday.

Myers, 24, had missed a month between late April and late May due to issues with his left wrist. He appeared in only three games before going back on the disabled list, then underwent surgery. Myers is batting .277/.327/.459 with five home runs and 19 RBI in 159 plate appearances this season.

Wil Myers to undergo left wrist surgery on Thursday, will be sidelined for at least eight weeks

wil myers getty
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Dennis Lin, beat writer for the San Diego Union-Tribune, shares the bad news

Myers has been limited to 35 games this season due to ongoing wrist issues and this procedure is going to keep him out of action until at least mid-August. The 24-year-old outfielder was acquired from the Rays back in December as part of a three-team, 11-player trade. He was batting .277/.327/.459 with five home runs, 19 RBI, and 30 runs scored in his first season with San Diego. Will Venable and Melvin Upton Jr. will handle center field for the fourth-place Padres, who entered play Wednesday with a disappointing 32-35 record.