NL East Report: Hot Stove Edition

An article by posted on December 22, 2009

Washington Nationals

Just off of their recent acquisition of starting pitcher Jason Marquis who signed for a reasonable two year deal at $15 million, the Nats aren’t done yet. Washington is now considered the favorites to sign former Pirates reliever Matt Capps who had drawn the interest of 15 teams including the Mets, Phillies and Yankees. Additionally, Bill Ladson of MLB.com is reporting that the Nationals have interest in free agent second baseman Orlando Hudson who they heavily pursued last offseason before he signed with the Dodgers. They are also making a strong run at free agent right-hander Jon Garland, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. Surprisingly, the Nats have made more noise than any other NL team this off season.

Atlanta Braves

The Braves accomplished their goal of moving either Derek Lowe or Javier Vasquez and acquired OF Melky Cabrera, LHP Mike Dunn, RHP Arodys Vizcaino from the Yankees for Vazquez and LHP Boone Logan. Melky will immediately take over left field duties for the Braves, while pitching prospects Dunn and Vizcaino get more seasoning in the minors. Vizcaino was ranked number 3  prospect in Yankees organization by Baseball America, and he has plenty of scouts excited.b The Braves rotation now looks like: Jairs Jurrjens, Tim Hudson, Tommy Hanson, Derek Lowe and Ken Kawakami. Earlier this month, the Braves bolstered their bullpen by signing Billy Wagner and Takashi Saito. Before Nick Johnson signed with the Yankees, the Braves were trying to lure him to fill their first base vacancy. Today, David O’Brien of the AJC speculated that the Braves will make a play for Adrian Gonzalez. In case you missed it, the Braves non-tendered Ryan Church last week. (hee hee)

Philadelphia Phillies

GM Ruben Amaro Jr. recently told reporters that he is about to bolster the bullpen with a couple of new additions. Earlier this month they picked up the team option on Jimmy Rollins for the 2011 season, because they felt he would make a big issue of it during the season and distract the team. Amaro defended his trade for Roy Halladay and revealed that he was signed to a three year extension for much less average dollars than C.C. Sabathia and Johan Santana, and that he got $6 million back from the Blue Jays in the deal. He also felt that Cliff Lee would bolt for free agency after the 2010 season after he rejecting a modest offer.

Florida Marlins

According to the Miami Herald, the Marlins have made a five year, $13 million offer to free agent left-hander Aroldis Chapman. The young Cuban phenom also has a $15 million dollar offer from the Red Sox. He is being compared to Stephen Strasburg and his fastball comes in at 102 mph. The Fish keep insisting that Josh Johnson is not on the block, but rumors continue to popup. Second baseman Dan Uggla has drawn the interest of several teams including the Braves and the Giants. Few expect him to be a Marlin much longer. By the way, they also say that they have no intentions of trading Jorge Cantu.

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