An MLB official told me over the weekend that word is spreading in the industry that the Washington Nationals have emerged as a favorite to sign free-agent first baseman Prince Fielder.
The MLB official I talked to wasn't sure the Nationals would go the eight to 10 years that Boras is seeking for Fielder, however. They might prefer to go shorter on the deal but as long as Boras is able to match or exceed the $25.4 million annual salary that Pujols is getting from the Angels, I'm guessing he will be happy. (via JSOnline, 1/2/2012)
Who wouldn't be happy with that kind of deal?
A person who is usually right more than he is wrong about these things told us last week the Nats were "in" but not "all in" on Prince, due to Rizzo's reluctance to go long-term. The key question is and was how to define "long-term". Our "person" told us today he is "guessing" (air quotes!) that Lerner is perfectly comfortable with a five year deal, with options, at say, $25.5 million annualy, and Boras wants a 7 year deal with an option to opt-out after five. That way, if Fielder is playing well he can get out at age 32 -- and that coincides nicely with the end of the Yankees' commitment to Mark Teixeira. Just thinking out loud here. *wink* *wink*
"Hearing" (there we go with the air quotes again!) a decision could be reached by the end of the week...now, if only Mr. Lerner and Mr. Boras can come to an understanding about what kind of 5-year deal this is going to be? Your guess is as good as ours.
No doubt what Bryce Harper is hoping for:
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