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Report: Nationals agree to acquire Brandon Phillips, who needs to approve deal

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The possibility was reported earlier this week and now FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports that the Nationals have an apparent agreement in place to acquire second baseman Brandon Phillips from the Reds. However, Phillips has full no-trade rights as a 10-and-5 player (10 years in the majors and five with the same team) and needs to sign off on any deal. Those talks are in progress, though Phillips’ tweet earlier tonight would indicate that he’s D.C. bound…

Phillips, 34, bounced back from an awful 2014 by batting .294/.328/.395 with 12 home runs and 70 RBI this past season. He also stole 23 bases, his most since 2009. Still, he only finished with a 97 OPS+ and has a 95 OPS+ over the past four seasons. On the bright side, he still plays solid defense at second base.

Phillips, who lives year-round in Cincinnati, is owed $13 million in 2016 and $14 million in 2017. Rosenthal hears that he’ll require a “financial adjustment” to sign off on the deal, but moving to a contender while being reunited with Dusty Baker are two factors in Washington’s favor.

Assuming the deal gets done, the Nationals will likely use Danny Espinosa at shortstop until top prospect Trea Turner is deemed ready for the majors. The club recently dealt Yunel Escobar to the Angels and plan to move Anthony Rendon back to his natural position at third base.

The Reds acquired Jose Peraza from the Dodgers on Tuesday as part of the three-team Todd Frazier trade and he could get the first shot at second base if Phillips gets dealt. Cincinnati also has Zack Cozart and Eugenio Suarez in their middle infield.

Phillips has spent 10 seasons with the Reds while making three All-Star appearances and winning four Gold Glove Awards.

Brian Anderson suffers hand fracture on a hit-by-pitch

Brian Anderson
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Marlins infielder/outfielder Brian Anderson departed Friday’s 19-11 win over the Phillies with a left hand contusion, the club announced. Following an X-ray, it was then revealed that he had sustained a fracture of the fifth metacarpal — an injury severe enough that it’ll likely keep him off the field for the remainder of the 2019 season.

Anderson suffered the injury on a hit-by-pitch in the third inning. On the first pitch of the at-bat, with the bases loaded and one out, he took a 93.9-m.p.h. fastball off his left hand. The HBP forced in a run, but he doubled over in pain and was quickly examined by a member of the Marlins’ staff before officially departing the game in the top of the fourth.

It’s an unfortunate way to end Anderson’s third campaign with the Marlins. The 26-year-old has posted some career-high numbers this year, reaching the 20-homer mark for the first time and batting a healthy .261/.342/.468 with an .810 OPS and 3.0 fWAR through 510 PA. Despite the setback, he should be fully healed and ready to go well in advance of the Marlins’ spring training in 2020.