All apologies for being incommunicado on my part. I do, however, have a plausible excuse: Bright House Networks internet service, or lack thereof. Suffice to say, typing this piece on my iPhone is cumbersome at best. We’ve also been busy tinkering with the design of the new site. I think you all will be pleasantly surprised by the outcome. I know I am! Onward to the meat and potatoes.
Let me throw a name out to you, Mike Morse. The internet is abuzz with speculation of the availability of 30 year-old utility infielder/outfield, who has been displaced Adam LaRoche, who the Nationals recently re-signed.
There are currently 10-11 teams keeping their eyes on Morse with the Rays, Mariners and Yankees actively trying to acquire him. The Nationals are looking for a left-handed reliever and/or prospects in return, according to Jim Bowden of ESPN.
Morse is the Rays kind of player. He is a righty that can play in the outfield and the infield (though to be fair, he isn’t known for his defensive prowess). In his eight years in the big leagues, Morse spent time in left field and right field, first base and third base, and short-stop. He also has some pop in his bat. Morse posted a .291 BA/.321 OBP/.470 SLG/.791 OPS in 2012, with 18 homers and 62 RBI in 407 at-bats. His 2011 numbers were even better, with Morse posting a .303 BA/.360 OBP/.550 SLG/.910 OPS line, with 35 homers and 95 RBI in 522 at-bats.
Morse doesn’t come with a terribly high price tag. He is expected to make $6.75MM in 2013, prior to becoming a free agent at the end of the season. He could be seen as a perfectly adequate candidate to platoon with Matt Joyce and James Loney.
A word of caution, Ken Rosenthal has reported that Morse is “strongly opposed” to being used as a designated hitter. I certainly wouldn’t consider that to be a deal breaker though.
In review, he’s a right handed power hitter that can play all over the field, and has a relatively low price tag. The Nationals also aren’t asking for much in return. Here’s to hope that the Rays don’t lose another potential player to the Yankees…cough, Hafner.