Yoenis Cespedes, Jason Heyward, Justin Upton, Wei-Yin Chen, Mike Leake, Ben Zobrist, Darren O'Day.
What do all of these players have in common? Every single one of them has been linked to an offer from the Washington Nationals this offseason.
Ok, but what's the big deal? Well, every single one of them also turned down that offer. Every. One.
But you say, they did convince Daniel Murphy to sign with them. We have seen this narrative play out before though. Average player has an extraordinary stretch in a contract year, gets big bucks in the offseason, even though he along with everyone else knows he will never live up to that contract (in this case, 3 years, $37.5 million).
Expectations will be somewhat diminished this season for Washington. That could be a blessing in disguise for this franchise. Maybe the Nationals can fly under the radar for a little while and make a run at things. The roster is certainly talented enough to do so.
The New York Mets have also announced that they will be retiring Mike Piazza's number this summer. This is quite the honor for the catcher, as he will be only the second Mets player (along with Tom Seaver) to have his jersey number retired. The Mets haven't been around forever, but it's still kind of strange to think that he will be just the second player to have that honor.
It's safe to say we have hit a dead period in the offseason. The big free agents are off the market. Teams are prepping their spring training rosters (hey, it's less than three weeks until pitchers and catchers report). Everybody takes a deep breath before the long grind begins.
That leaves us to sit around and completely overanalyze the rosters before actual baseball games start. And to come up with and pore over this prospect list and that list of storylines.
I'll leave you with a look at the Braves and Nationals spring training uniforms. What do you think?