Report: Oswalt to Nats still possible

Report: Oswalt to Nats still possible
January 26, 2012, 1:55 am
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The Nationals may have passed on Prince Fielder, but that doesn't mean they are done making moves. Several big name free agents remain on the market and, according to Ken Rosenthal, the Nats might still be interested in right-hander Roy Oswalt.

This from Rosenthal's blog on FoxSports.com:

"Other clubs remain interested in Oswalt, including the Boston Red Sox, Washington Nationals, Cleveland Indians and Milwaukee Brewers, sources say...

The Nationals, even after acquiring left-hander Gio Gonzalez, value Oswalts veteran presence and stuff."

Rosenthal adds that at this point Oswalt prefers to play for either the St. Louis Cardinals or the Texas Rangers, the two teams that met in the World Series back in October. But at 34 years old and with a recent history of back problems, the former All-Star may have to be more flexible. Rosenthal cites a source who says Oswalt may settle for a two-year deal as he insists he will pitch in 2012.

The Nats seem to already have a full rotation, especially with the addition of lefty Gio Gonzalez. Gonzalez will slot behind Stephen Strasburg and Jordan Zimmermann with John Lannan providing one of the best number four starters in the National League. Chien-Ming Wang is expected to be fifth in the rotation, at least for now.

But in considering Strasburg's limit of 160 innings for 2012, it may serve Washington well to have another legitimate starter on staff. They may need somebody to fill in for Strasburg, especially if the team is in a playoff position down the stretch. In addition, the Nationals traded their best pitching prospects away to the Oakland Athletics to acquire Gonzalez. If an injury were to occur, the team is now much thinner in pitching than they once were in their minor league system. The option of bringing up Tommy Milone or Brad Peacock isn't there anymore and if they are interested in adding a veteran arm it makes sense.