If Braves Pass, Glavine Could Pitch in D.C.
Those Tom Glavine rumors just persist, don't they?
For the second time in the past week, MLB.com's Bill Ladson has thrown fuel on the fires of speculation that longtime Braves to Mets turned Braves pitcher Tom Glavine would be more than happy to pitch at Nationals Park, if his first choice of returning to the Braves doesn't work out.
Now, most assume that Glavine will return to the Braves. He's an elder statesman of sorts in the Atlanta clubhouse, and adding his arm could only strengthen their rotation, even with the new arrivals of Derek Lowe, Javier Vasquez and Kenshin Kawakami. If nothing else, it would give the Braves a starting bridge until Tim Hudson is ready to go.
But what if those talks don't resurrect themselves? What if Glavine really is a legitimate free agent, not one who's an afterthought to return to his prior club? What if Washington can really get him.
If that's actually the case, how much would Tom Glavine be worth to the Nationals? A one-year, $5 million deal? Or should Stan Kasten, the alleged link between Glavine and D.C., authorize GM Jim Bowden to go out and lock up the 300-win lefty?
There are multiple reasons to hope for a Glavine signing, but none is more significant than the role he could play mentoring Washington's young pitchers. No matter what you feel about him -- and his history with both Atlanta and the Mets probably doesn't engender too much love of the man in these parts -- Glavine knows how to win at the Major League level. He knows how to get big outs, and he's been part of a significant building process before.
Perhaps most importantly, if he came to D.C., Glavine's smart enough to know where the Nationals are at in that process. He would know that they're not going to be contenders while he's in the rotation, so he could help to build going forward.
That, in itself, is a key bridge role that seems to be sorely lacking from the current Nats payroll, and its one that he could fill ably. Besides, wouldn't you feel better with a rotation that includes Daniel Cabrera and the oft-injured if occasionally impressive Shawn Hill if Tom Glavine were at the front of it?
So, what do people think? Is this all a big pipe dream? Or could Glavine really call the park over at Navy Yard home? And would he be worth a two-year deal, just to get more out of him on his way out of the game? Keep tuned over at Nationals Journal to see if Chico digs up anything about this from today's NatsFest.
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