The Texas Rangers have added another left-handed bat in signing Lance Berkman to a one-year deal worth $10 million on Saturday, this according to multiple reports. Texas already signed A.J. Pierzynski to a contract this off-season, bringing two capable lefties into their lineup. Neither Pierzynski or Berkman are expected to play first base, but one could conclude this isn’t good news for Adam LaRoche.
LaRoche has seen his list of suitors dwindle over the past few months and though he is remaining patient, the odds of him coming back to Washington seem to be increasing.
One option for LaRoche, however, may have resurfaced this week. Yahoo! Sports reported on Friday that Boston could see LaRoche as a backup plan if the Mike Napoli deal falls through. Yahoo!’s Tim Brown also says the Red Sox might be willing to trade for Michael Morse if LaRoche re-signs with the Nats.
Signing LaRoche would require the Red Sox to give up a draft pick, something that the rest of their moves this offseason suggest they are unwilling to do. The pick would be a compensatory selection as their number seven overall slot is protected. MLB.com has that pick projected as 39th overall.
The Nationals haven’t budged on their offer of two years for LaRoche and, unless things fall right in Boston, he may end up having to reconsider his demand of a third year. Washington has their back-up plan in place and the market has certainly played out in their favor.