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Nationals sign LaRoche; could Morse be on the move?

Tweet [1]

Now we might have a trade candidate worth discussing.

According to Adam Kilgore, the Nationals have agreed to a two-year deal with Adam LaRoche, [2] a signing that would mean next to nothing to the Yankees except for this: The Nationals no longer have a spot for Mike Morse.

As the Yankees continue to look for a right-handed hitter who can play the outfield, Morse stands out as a potential target who would cost less than Justin Upton or Giancarlo Stanton but might perfectly fill the opening. He’s signed through 2013, can play both outfielder corners and has hit both lefties and righties in his career.

In theory, Morse could be the power right-handed bat the Yankees need, starting at DH against right-handers and giving the outfielders a break against lefties.

How much would he cost? I’ve said before, I’m bad at estimating these sort of things, but I know this much: Morse turns 31 in March, and although his career numbers are good, his track record is fairly short. He came up with the Mariners and it took him a while to really establish himself in the big leagues. His age and affordable contract are going to drive up his value. His fairly small sample size is going to push it down.

Washington already has Jayson Werth, Bryce Harper and newly acquired Denard Span in the outfield, and with LaRoche back in the mix, there’s no everyday role for Morse and he’s too valuable to keep as a reserve. It’s common sense to sign him, and although I know nothing of the Nationals inner workings, I’m not sure they’d agree to bring back LaRoche without knowing there’s a strong market for Morse.