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Nats Trade Milledge, Hanrahan To Pittsburgh For Morgan, Burnett

[UPDATE, 3:30 p.m.] -- Done deal. Absolutely finalized. Look for a more detailed news story here in a few minutes. GM Mike Rizzo will address the media about the deal at 4:10 p.m.

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[UPDATE, 2:55 p.m.] - The trade is actually a 2-for-2. Lastings Milledge and reliever Joel Hanrahan going to Pittsburgh. Nyjer Morgan and Sean Burnett coming to Washington.

More to come soon.

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The Nationals are close to finalizing a deal that would send Lastings Milledge to Pittsburgh in exchange for Nyjer Morgan, a team source said. I'm still trying to uncover the final wrinkle in this trade, though. It probably includes one other player that the Nats will send to Pittsburgh.

Morgan, who turns 29 on Thursday, represents that sort of player that Washington previously overlooked. He excels defensively, steals bases, and hits for adequate average but minimal power. Here's his baseball reference page. He has played mostly in LF for the Pirates this year, but also has the tools of a natural center fielder.

I'll post more as details develop.

By Chico Harlan  |  June 30, 2009; 2:14 PM ET
 
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Next: Milledge, Hanrahan Dealt to Pirates

Comments

There is a God.

Posted by: rucks35 | June 30, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

I've expressed my very intelligent thoughts on this trade in the last post.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't mind sending Milledge, but only Milledge for Morgan. It doesn't look like Lastings has a future with the Nats. However, Morgan doesn't look like he is anything special. I would be just as happy to keep Harris there for now and try out Bernadina or Maxwell or possible trade for a bigger/better CF in the off-season.

It seems like the Pirate fans aren't high on Morgan either. Milledge is also 5 years younger.

I'm not sure what they see in this guy, but they shouldn't give up anything more than Milledge. It may be Nook Logan part deux.

Looking at his stats. He isn't that great of a base stealer 18 of 28. His OBP is decent at .351, but he has struckout 49 times and only walked 29.

I don't see what they like. Isn't there anyone better that we could trade for? I think Milledge could be put together with some other guys for a better trade.

Posted by: brothbart | June 30, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Not a fan of this move at all.

Posted by: AnonymousSources | June 30, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

We get a better player - and the Lerners would get to shed more salary (Morgan actually makes LESS than Milledge + subtract another salary with another player). Everybody wins!

Posted by: Kev29 | June 30, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Sorry shorty new posted.

The grammar in my post was aweful, how's this?


'By trading Milledge, for Morgan, we get someone with a fantastic UZR'.

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Pending who the other player is(hopfully a minor league infielder not a pitcher)...I support this move as it gives us three athletic interchangeable options (could potentially play all field) in the OF...Morgan, Harris and Dukes.

Posted by: markfd | June 30, 2009 2:27 PM | Report abuse

It wasn't bad, soundbloke. I took your meaning in the original post.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Dukes next to go...but who wants him?

Posted by: AnonymousSources | June 30, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

I am a fan of getting rid of Milledge. I'd be curious to see the full details, I can't see it being a 2 for 1 swap unless we gave them a long shot prospect like the one we gave up for Logan Kensing.

Posted by: hleeo3 | June 30, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Dumping Milledge for anything in return is a good move. We don't have time to wait for him. He's reached his learning threshold. Dude acted like he'd already arrived, didn't need to work or learn anything else. He insulted the coaches, insisted he'd do things his way, which got him where?

He's been in the big leagues for 4 years and he hasn't even learned that he still needs to learn? He may only be 24 years old, but he's already an entitled vet, dogging it long before he's earned the right. Good riddance.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 2:19 PM


^^^^^What he said^^^^^

Posted by: FloresFan | June 30, 2009 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Morgan has more stolen bases this year than Harris, Hernandez, Maxwell and Dukes combined (18/17). That's kind of nice, right?

Posted by: Kev29 | June 30, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

FloresFan, thanks, but I'm a girl. =)

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Alright, time for me to get dumped on again, but if they gave Dukes or Maxwell the same blank ticket they gave Milledge - a full season at the ML level to learn CF -they wouldn't even be thinking about bringing in the next Nook Logan/Marlon Byrd/Kid in Seattle who was with the Phils and Mets after us but whose name escapes me, oh yeah, Chavez.

Posted by: truke | June 30, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Although...what if it's a 2-for-1 swap the other way around?

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I can't see it being a 2 for 1 swap unless we gave them a long shot prospect like the one we gave up for Logan Kensing.

Posted by: hleeo3 | June 30, 2009 2:29 PM

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

I'm not impressed with Milledge or his attitude. But I am pretty underwhelmed by Nyjer Morgan too. Morgan's a 29yo guy with barely a year's service time.

Maybe Moran will be serviceable for a year, or so. I'd be concerned that Milledge will blossom with different coaching around him.

And if the other Nats (as rumored) is Stammen, that trade is a fleecing on the Bucs part.

Posted by: comish4lif | June 30, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Let me get this straight.

We are, one year removed, trading Brian Schneider and Ryan Church -- two starters on a team far better than ours, who would be playing here today nearly everyday -- for a 29 year old Nyjer Morgan? All because Rizzo doesn't like the attitude of a 24 year old Lastings Milledge? At the very bottom of his trade value? For a team that isn't going anywhere this year? When we have no room on the 25 man roster for Morgan? When you could hand the at bats to Justin Maxwell to end the debate about whether he can play in the bigs?

Unless Rizzo has a complementary move ready to launch, this trade is indefensible.

Posted by: WebberDC | June 30, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

The rest of the deal: Sean Burnett would go to Washington, and Joel Hanrahan would come to Pittsburgh.

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | June 30, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

truke,

I think they feel that was what last year was. At least in the field.

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Insert "from" between "removed," and "trading."

Posted by: WebberDC | June 30, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

one for one. addition by subtraction. c ya lmill.

Posted by: 1of9000 | June 30, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Teams have agreed to Morgan/Burnett for Milledge/Hanrahan in principle.

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | June 30, 2009 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Rumor is now Hanrahan + MIlledge for Morgan + Sean Burnett (LH RP/SP)

Posted by: Brian_ | June 30, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Somebody from the 25 man roster would have to be included to make room for Morgan.

Posted by: NoVaNatRat | June 30, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse

GNT's source, presumably:

http://bucsbits.mlblogs.com/

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Include Hanrahan in this trade.

Posted by: Tom8 | June 30, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

If that is the case adn we get Sean Burnett I would do that trade. Hanrahan needs new scenery.

Posted by: brothbart | June 30, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

My bad, twitter was my source: http://twitter.com/Dejan_Kovacevic

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | June 30, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Let me be very, very clear here. First - I would trade Lastings Milledge for a sack of batting practice balls and a pitch count cliker. That having been said, as soon as the kid grows up and plays for a manager who doesn't miscast him, he will be an excellent, yes I said excellent, major league left fielder. Great hands at the plate, great speed, better than average power, average arm and defensive skills that could be developed/hidden in left.

Posted by: truke | June 30, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

this is a terrible move. any move that sacrifices the future to make this year's team better is a complete mistake. and Morgan is just a spare part--and 29 tomorrow.

bad move.

Posted by: bottomfeeders10 | June 30, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Oh gawd, there's NO WAY Stammen's in that trade. NO WAY. Scooter or Sofa said maybe Bergmann, which I could go for. I've loved Bergy, but I'm kinda over him too.

But Stammen? nonononononononoNO. You will witness a complete NatsNut meltdown here if Rizzo gives away ANY of our hot pitchers for Morgan.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Getting Burnett (and getting rid of Hanrahan) makes it a little better...but Morgan for Milledge is the killer IMO.

Posted by: AnonymousSources | June 30, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

once again we get another corner outfielder. Morgan is a natural LF, not a CF. I'd rather have an aged Kenny Lofton, at least we KNOW he can play the position and give us some speed in the lineup.

Posted by: ssktigers | June 30, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Also truke, no need to fear a dumping. I personally see Morgan as a fourth outfielder/pinch runner/late inning replacement. Nothing more really. He'll do for now, and we need someone with his defense. But I agree that he is no long term solution.

I would love to see Maxwell up as well but, I just think that is because I want to believe he is ready. He is too old not to be ready, and too young to play well.

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

1:40pm: Kovacevic says the teams have agreed in principle to exchange Milledge and Hanrahan for Morgan and Burnett. mlbtraderumors.com

Posted by: brothbart | June 30, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Chico, I hope your sources are better than Rosenthal's sources.

[God | the invisible pink unicorn ] knows your prose and wit are.

Posted by: ihatewalks | June 30, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

I am not a fan of this move either.

And don't include Hanrahan. If they had options on him I am certain they would have sent him to the minors as they did Garret Mock and made him a starter again. He's an SP, not a reliever as he doesn't have the temperament.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

If Hanrahan is really included, consider me sold.

Posted by: NoVaSnow | June 30, 2009 2:45 PM | Report abuse

The problem is that they look too much like an American league team as opposed to one that must play in a pretty tough NL division!!

Mayhap both Dunn and Willingham would be better served by playing in the American league where they would be pretty fair at DH. Guzman as well. Perhaps a great CF prospect can be had? And a closer to boot.

I guess starting pitching is pretty much settled once they sign on Strasberg? They seem to have plenty of SP's?

With Ian Desmond, and now perhaps Kobernus at second. A new middle infield?

Its the outfield that is weak both from a hitting and fielding perspective. That needs to be addressed, not with utility guys like Morgan. He is just another Willie Harris? What are they thinking? Its McCutheon they really need. But then the Bucs fans would really revolt.


Definitely keep Nick if he has overcome his injury issues and the corners are covered.

They appear to have plenty of utility types both down in AAA and on the parent club.

They need relief pitching and outfielders. Dukes may be one. They now need the others perhaps starting with a bonfide star CF.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Milledge is worthless to us, so why not get somebody that brings something to the table that nobody else can? Milledge can't steal bases, draw walks, play defense or hit for average. Although he's 24, he's been around enough to know what he is and what he isn't. He is a mediocre talent with no position and a bad attitude. Maybe we could get more down the road, but I have no problem cutting ties with him. Yes, Church/Schneider for Morgan sucks, but it is what it is at this point. We can't blame Rizzo for getting what he can out of guy with no future with us. Our young pitchers need defense behind them and Morgan will bring that.

And please get off the Justin Maxwell bandwagon. He's an old prospect that can't hit at this level. Bernadina is the real deal, but he'll be out until the fall. He can play RF too (which he was doing in SYR).

Standing pat is not working, so it's time for Rizzo to earn his money. Maybe Grissom can do with Morgan what he couldn't do with Milledge and help him not get thrown out so much. But I'm thrilled to have some fresh blood come to town.

Posted by: sec307 | June 30, 2009 2:47 PM | Report abuse

And the nats do appear to do best in IL play when they can use a DH.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Please let the other player be Austin Kearns.

Posted by: SavedByZero | June 30, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

me too. I wish the best for Hanrahan, but I will have an ulcer by the all star break if I have to keep watching him.

*************
If Hanrahan is really included, consider me sold.

Posted by: NoVaSnow | June 30, 2009 2:45 PM

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, GNT. So we have data points from the Pittsburgh MLB.com reporter and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette beat reporter.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Maybe they should bring up Padilla and give him a try.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

uhhh, NatsNut, is that hot as far as pitching or hot as far as looks? ;-)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 2:50 PM | Report abuse

he he. um both. Stammen's a cutie.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 2:51 PM | Report abuse

So if this is true than who goes from the 25 man roster? Belliard?

Posted by: brothbart | June 30, 2009 2:51 PM | Report abuse

sc307

I was considering just copying and pasting your post and signing it!

Although I it's with a heavy heart I've fallen of the Maxwell bandwagon.

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 2:52 PM | Report abuse

"He's an SP, not a reliever as he doesn't have the temperament."

He's a reliever not a SP as he's so inefficient that he wouldn't be able to work past the 5th most games, especially the way Acta uses his starters.

Posted by: JhonnyBheGhood | June 30, 2009 2:52 PM | Report abuse

As long as they don't trade Gary Majewski and Bill Bray -- key parts of the back end of the bullpen -- I'm cool with the transaction.

Posted by: Ted_Striker | June 30, 2009 2:52 PM | Report abuse

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2009/06/pirates-nats-close-to-swapping-morgan-milledge.html

Posted by: AtomicOvermind | June 30, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

That's okay, Ted. We still have Ayala and Wookie.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Career Statistics
Player Name Stat Type Bavg Obp Slg OPS G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO HR 2B R RBI SB
Willie Harris MLB .247 .327 .350 677 683 1755 274 434 72 18 24 143 92 30 197 336 0.04 0.11 0.40 0.21 0.13
Corey Patterson MLB .252 .291 .405 696 996 3481 479 878 161 30 104 363 184 50 169 774 0.10 0.16 0.48 0.36 0.18
Nyjer Morgan MLB .286 .351 .376 727 157 545 80 156 22 9 3 41 34 18 48 100 0.02 0.14 0.51 0.26 0.22
Justin Maxwell MLB .200 .286 .340 626 28 50 6 10 1 0 2 6 3 0 5 19 0.07 0.04 0.21 0.21 0.11

Willie Harris Minor .283 .365 .415 780 550 2138 380 606 114 27 38 224 179 67 262 373 0.07 0.21 0.69 0.41 0.33
Corey Patterson Minor .284 .340 .499 839 348 1399 249 397 89 25 54 205 86 33 108 289 0.16 0.26 0.72 0.59 0.25
Jorge Padilla Minor .282 .350 .408 758 1070 3864 559 1091 188 20 86 523 136 64 352 742 0.08 0.18 0.52 0.49 0.13
Nyjer Morgan Minor .294 .370 .366 736 513 1980 337 582 65 28 7 164 234 80 167 350 0.01 0.13 0.66 0.32 0.46
Justin Maxwell Minor .263 .354 .462 816 248 912 165 240 44 10 39 151 69 17 116 234 0.16 0.18 0.67 0.61 0.28

Justin Maxwell College .299 .404 .518 922 103 328 82 98 20 2 16 71 24 8 47 82 0.16 0.19 0.80 0.69 0.23

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Amended position:

The Burnett/Hanrahan part of this trade is a positive for the Nats, but the trade overall is still a net negative.

All those who want to get rid of Milledge because you do not like him are falling prey to the same biases that led Bodes to trade for people because they are toolsy. He may never be what Bodes thought he would, but he will almost assuredly be better than Nyjer Morgan for a longer period of time.

This trade makes the Nats net +4 in age and reincarnates the Branden Watson/Nook Logan search for the "prototypical CF."

What Rizz should do is go talk to Josh Byrnes about Chris Young, who has signed a reasonable multi-year with the Snakes but is struggling mightily. Plays a UZR avg CF this year, and is currently hurt. Snakes save money, we have a player who has hit 30+ HRs. That makes some sense even though Byrnes would likely turn us down.

Posted by: WebberDC | June 30, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

This screams of "gotta get the bad attitude out of here". I am not for this at all - this is the lowest value Milledge has had since he was in 11th grade!

Posted by: goexpos2 | June 30, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Rotoworld has picked it up as well: Hanrahan and Milledge for Morgan and Burnett.


http://www.rotoworld.com/content/playerpages/player_main.aspx?sport=MLB&hl=253963&id=4659

Posted by: comish4lif | June 30, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

I think attitude may be as important to Rizzo as aptitude. Lastings didn't help himself any with his instances of immature behavior like showing up late for the pre-season team meeting in Miami. But he ia symptomatic of some athletes of this day and age - a young prodigy who believes his talent gives him the leeway to do as he pleases because it has always been so on the amateur level and somewhat on the professional level.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 30, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Seems like a terrible trade for the Nats to me as the Nats aren't contending for anything and they receive the side of the trade with the players that have zero upside.

Posted by: cainoo7x | June 30, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Always good for a losing team to make a trade with little upside or potential. Church and Schneider for a 4th OF? Ugly.

Posted by: hoo93 | June 30, 2009 2:59 PM | Report abuse

"they receive the side of the trade with the players that have zero upside."

I'm OK with this. I'm sick of upside. Willy Mo, Flopez, NookBrandonKenny LoganKellyWatson, and on and on and on.

It doesn't hurt to have a guy who can play a position, hit a little, and steal a bunch of bases. I'll take that over Toolsy McPotential for a change.

Posted by: joebleux | June 30, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Let me get this straight.

We are, one year removed, trading Brian Schneider and Ryan Church -- two starters on a team far better than ours, who would be playing here today nearly everyday -- for a 29 year old Nyjer Morgan? All because Rizzo doesn't like the attitude of a 24 year old Lastings Milledge? At the very bottom of his trade value? For a team that isn't going anywhere this year? When we have no room on the 25 man roster for Morgan? When you could hand the at bats to Justin Maxwell to end the debate about whether he can play in the bigs?

Unless Rizzo has a complementary move ready to launch, this trade is indefensible.

Posted by: WebberDC | June 30, 2009 2:36 PM


Remember WebberDC, that trade was all Jim Bowden. I think Rizzo is trying to put his stamp on the team and at the same time he's dumping a malcontent from the Bowden regime.

I personally love the trade. Granted, Morgan isn't anything great, but who could expect us to get anything for Milledge? We're talking about a guy with a bad/selfish attitude, plays poor defense, and is a career .265 hitter. Nothing to write home about.

We need defense more than anything right now. If Guzman,NJ,FoF,Dunn,Hammer can get their bats going, I think thats plenty of offense as long as you have an above average defense.

Posted by: FloresFan | June 30, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Er, let's also not forget that the only person to place any real value on Milledge after his rookie outings was Jim Bowden. The Twins laughed at him being part of the Santana deal and, made Gomez the center-piece of that trade.

Could we not be overlooking that this is simply the best deal they could get for Lastings. If you believe the internet, and I always do (heh), we have been shopping Milledge since the end of last season.

At least Morgan fulfills a very desperate need, and will make the playing of Dunn/Willigham less perilous for now, and can be an outfield sub when we get a real centre-fielder or Bernardina comes good.

Also, get the attitude out of town.

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

this is a terrible move. any move that sacrifices the future to make this year's team better is a complete mistake.

Posted by: bottomfeeders10 | June 30, 2009 2:43 PM

One day we hate The Plan, the next day we love it

Posted by: Kev29 | June 30, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

So the Nats have traded Church, Schneider and Milledge for Morgan and Burnett??

Well Burnett betta be worth it cause Nyjer aint anything but spinning wheels.

Posted by: dovelevine | June 30, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

joebleux: LOL and Amen!

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Good by and good luck, Joel. We won't miss the other guy.

Who's next? Belliard, Dukes or Kearns?

Posted by: deMille_Ondefloss | June 30, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Corey Patterson: Power 80, Speed 91, Contact 30, Patience 11.
Willie Harris: Power 45, Speed 92, Contact 56, Patience 66
Justin Maxwell: Power 93, Speed 91, Contact 22, Patience 75
Nyjer Morgan: Power 12, Speed 96, Contact 58, Patience 31
Jorge Padilla: Power 57, Speed 71, Contact 47, Patience 40.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Periculum,

Its spelled Strasburg not Strasberg.

Maybe they'll include Padilla and Martin in the trade for Morgan. That would be a good trade. Nuthin for nuthin.

Posted by: natsguy | June 30, 2009 3:03 PM | Report abuse

can the nats continue the purge of the bowden boarding school of wayward baseball souls by seeing what the team can get for dukes and belliard? the time is ovah to willingly take on other team's projects and rizzo needs to shut the doors of the last chance saloon. kearns is on my gotsa-go list, but his contract makes him immovable

Posted by: surly_w | June 30, 2009 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Also - we're picking up an OF who will be on the roster for the rest of the season. Who else is on the block. Nick Johnson? Willingham?

Posted by: Kev29 | June 30, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

sec307 hit the nail on the head - Bernadina should/will be in CF when healthy. We would be acquiring a spare part with no options (I think) for a player that still could have some value in Milledge.

Just do the Hanrahan piece of the trade. How about Milledge for the SP they just sent down (tip of my tongue name)?

Posted by: goexpos2 | June 30, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

I kinda feel bad for Nyjer and Sean. It must suck coming to a team with this record.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Sean Burnett - left handed pitcher. Whip 1.14, era 3,06, 1st round choice in 2000 draft. 26 years old. Sorely needed relief pitcher.

The trade now looks better.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:06 PM | Report abuse

nope. don't like it. nosir.
Periculum, while you're looking things up, where would Ryan Church fit on that table?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

I kinda feel bad for Nyjer and Sean. It must suck coming to a team with this record.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 3:04 PM

But they're leaving Pittsburgh!?!

Posted by: Kev29 | June 30, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

truke,

You are seeing things in LMillz that just aren't there. He has a below-average arm, hits for average power, not above (especially for a LF), fast hands yes but no plate discipline. As for his speed, he wastes what he has. He can't steal bases or cover ground in the OF because his baseball IQ is so low. So if he can't use his speed what good is it?

Dukes brings you the same headaches but with more talent.

Posted by: sec307 | June 30, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Patterson, Harris and Morgan are all left handed hitters.

Maxwell and Padilla are right handed.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

It's a done deal.

Posted by: AnonymousSources | June 30, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Ryna Church:

Batting .281 with 2 HR and 5 SB, 14 dbls.

Power 91, Speed 26 (not a good fielder), Contact 32, Patience 66.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Trade looks interesting. At least it isn't with the Reds and that is a welcome change, thanks Mike.

Posted by: cokedispatch | June 30, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Rizzo has stated we need more defense-minded, athletic players with speed. I am guessing Dunn and Willingham are on the block.

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | June 30, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

"I kinda feel bad for Nyjer and Sean. It must suck coming to a team with this record."

They're coming from a team that is going on its 17th straight losing season. I think they'll be fine with it.

Posted by: section417 | June 30, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

hey, at least Pittsburgh's won 35 games.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

What would really be ironic is if Lastings gets to Pittsburgh by Thursday and is in the lineup to play the Mets in a makeup game at PNC Park.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 30, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

I have Morgan on my fantasy team! I love that guy! Here's why he was available:
McCutchen took over the lead-off role the other week. Morgan was putting things together this year after fits and starts in previous years. He is way better than Nook Logan.

Here, the Nats (we, if I'm Rob Dibble) will finally have the lead off hitter we need. Morgan gets that spot to himself and will be the only bonafide base stealer on the roster. He has 18 steals this year, and has had his playing time decreased as of late. He could steal 40 total and score a ton of runs when our 2nd half hitters heat up (Zimmerman, Dunn, Willingham).

I like this deal. The other guy? Let me look him up.

Posted by: jmurray019 | June 30, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

So you don't get a light-hitting 29 y.o. outfielder to pinch-run on a 100-loss team; he has to play center field. Leaving Willie Harris -- oooh, I just got a bad feeling about this...

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Corey Patterson: Power 80, Speed 91, Contact 30, Patience 11.
Willie Harris: Power 45, Speed 92, Contact 56, Patience 66
Justin Maxwell: Power 93, Speed 91, Contact 22, Patience 75
Nyjer Morgan: Power 12, Speed 96, Contact 58, Patience 31
Jorge Padilla: Power 57, Speed 71, Contact 47, Patience 40.
Ryan Church: Power 91, Speed 26, Contact 32, Patience 66

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:12 PM | Report abuse

WE HATEZZZ ZEE PLAN!!!

WE LOVEZZZ ZEE PLAN!!!

~Gollum, Nationals Journal denizen

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

I don't like this trade. I think we could get more for Milledge or at least get someone younger. Morgan is 29 and seems more like a stop-gap than a long-term piece.

When you trade an OF for OF, you get in a tricky area.

Posted by: dclifer97 | June 30, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

That's damning-with-faint-praise bordering on Abuse.
********
[Morgan] is way better than Nook Logan.
Posted by: jmurray019 | June 30, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Maxwell is still the guy the want out there if he can hit for average and consistency. He now has 10 homers in Syracuse.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Harris may never have more value in a deal for us than now... Would hate to see him go, one of the few bright spots

Posted by: Kev29 | June 30, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Willingham has been in the block since Dunn signed. No one interested. No a soul. Except Jim Bowden. Just another man with talent only Jim could see.

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Burnett is 26 and a 1st rounder like Millege. You get a left handed relief pitcher.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

For Lastings defenders, I'd just like to share a story about watching Milledge play for the Zephyrs when I lived in New Orleans. Before every at bat, Lastings would step into the box and draw out a huge dollar sign with his bat. He then would proceed to show no progression at the plate and get shown up as the fool that he is by any pitcher with a brain. You know who has great tools? DeAngelo Hall. Can the man play baseball at a major league level? No.

Posted by: rucks35 | June 30, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Let's face it. In too long a time period the Nats have identified the following long-term pieces:

Zimmerman, Flores, Zimmermann, Lannan.

One day we can possibly add Strasburg, Espinoza, Storen, and one more 09 draft pick.

Is that progress?

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | June 30, 2009 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Will someone please tell me the corresponding roster move to put Morgan on the 25-man?

Reduce the bullpen and DFA Colome?

DFA Kearns?

For the life of me, I can't figure it out.

Posted by: WebberDC | June 30, 2009 3:16 PM | Report abuse

this trade most likely isn't about what the nats receive, but what gets exported. milledge most likely had alienated enough people in the FO and in the dugout that he would never again be a significant player in DC. now, if the dunnkey could be moved to a power-starved AL team needing a DH (hello...angels) for some close-to-ready prospects rizzo should get the full-time GM jobn.

Posted by: surly_w | June 30, 2009 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Willingham and Dunn should be attractive to AL teams in the playoff hunt. Now that Willingham has raised his average. Why not package them together, throw in Guzman. Get a prospect that has a better chance of making it ... ala Nick and Zimmerman.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

"Rizzo has stated we need more defense-minded, athletic players with speed. I am guessing Dunn and Willingham are on the block."

Right, because the problem last night was that we couldn't play defense....

I'm saying it forever, the only way to win is to score more runs than the other team. If you keep the other team from getting any runs and you don't get any yourself, you still don't win.

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Ditto.

---

joebleux: LOL and Amen!

Posted by: NatsNut | June 30, 2009 3:01 PM

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

That would explain the Cubs Dynasty of the last century...
*******
I'm saying it forever, the only way to win is to score more runs than the other team. If you keep the other team from getting any runs and you don't get any yourself, you still don't win.
Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:17 PM |

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully the bullpen will be improved. Morgan should be an adequate table setter with speed. Not earthshaking for sure, but it should help. Morgan could be a nice fit for 4 or 5 years if he is productive.

Posted by: cokedispatch | June 30, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

If it's Hanrahan & Milledge for Morgan & Burnett, sobeit. Short-term gain to the Nationals, but long term loss.
Morgan would plug into CF & probably hit leadoff, while Burnett is a servicable LHRP (.200BAA, but 50/50 on GO/AO & TBB/K). Where the Nationals lose is in age (Milledge=24, Morgan=29) and in TBB/K (Hanrahan=1W/2K, Burnett=1W/1K).

Posted by: BinM | June 30, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Good point Section506.

And on that point, whatever happened to players that can play defense AND drive in runs?

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | June 30, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Wow, the Bucs fans think Hanrahan is better than Burnett. Have they seen Hanrahan pitch?

Posted by: FloresFan | June 30, 2009 3:22 PM | Report abuse

now i realize what the dunnkey's initials stand for...awful defensively. jimbow wanted to build the nats in the image of his reds a team where six-to-eight guys could mash and maybe two to three could play passable major league defense.

Posted by: surly_w | June 30, 2009 3:22 PM | Report abuse

"I'm saying it forever, the only way to win is to score more runs than the other team. If you keep the other team from getting any runs and you don't get any yourself, you still don't win."

Yet If you score 9 and they score 10 you still lose

Posted by: JDB1 | June 30, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Let's face it. In too long a time period the Nats have identified the following long-term pieces:

Zimmerman, Flores, Zimmermann, Lannan.

One day we can possibly add Strasburg, Espinoza, Storen, and one more 09 draft pick.

Is that progress?

----------

Whoa, there, pilgrim. You're saying that out of Lannan, Detwiler, Stammen, and Martis you see 0 other pieces of the future? I understand saying that only one or two, the others will flame out, but ZERO?

And Clippard, Ballestar, Chico, Bergmann, and Mock? I can see you saying there's no hall of famers there, not even an All-Star, but there's no tolerable reliever or two-to-three year number 5 starter?

You see no potential in Elijah Dukes?

I don't drink the Maxwell Kool-Aid, but you can really entirely write him off?

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

If Gas Canrahan is going to the Steel City shouldn't someone notify the fire marshal?

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 30, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

"And on that point, whatever happened to players that can play defense AND drive in runs?"

Shh, GoNats Terps, your making me nostalgic for times I can't remember!

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

I'd rather see a couple of B-level A (or AA)-ball prospects come to the Nats than an unneeded ML player. One gets the feeling that with LMillz we just had no say in what was coming back via trade. That said, a legit leadoff hitter and legit CF are two of the major things we've been lacking all year, so way to go, Rizzo!

Posted by: jcville | June 30, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

this is the kind of trade that bill veeck used to call swapping two $50 thousand cats for a $100,000 dog. change of scenery may do the players good.

Posted by: surly_w | June 30, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Dear Mr. Rizzo,

I'm not sure if you received my highlight reel, but I too play OF. I can steal the occasional base (on passed ball non calls), run excellent outfield routes (not directly to the ball, of course), slap the ball around the infield (mainly into double plays) and I don't make waves in the clubhouse (so long as I can play my music).

If, sir, you are in fact trying to create a 40 man roster full of outfielders, I am your man. You will lose my revenue as a season ticket holder unfortunately, but I do promise to bring sliced oranges to every Thursday day game.

Sincerely,

LDO

Posted by: LosDoceOcho | June 30, 2009 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Love Maxwell, naturally. Both him and Stammen are relatively old though.

Glad they didnt' trade Stammen though.

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | June 30, 2009 3:28 PM | Report abuse

"I'm OK with this. I'm sick of upside. Willy Mo, Flopez, NookBrandonKenny LoganKellyWatson, and on and on and on."

Nook Logan was like the opposite of upside.

Posted by: JhonnyBheGhood | June 30, 2009 3:30 PM | Report abuse

mlb on xm - - confirming trade, although John Russell, pirate mgr, not able to comment as it isn't official according to him just yet.

Posted by: cokedispatch | June 30, 2009 3:30 PM | Report abuse

"Will someone please tell me the corresponding roster move to put Morgan on the 25-man?

Reduce the bullpen and DFA Colome?"

No, although DFA Colome would work for me.

"DFA Kearns?"

Probably not, although that one also would work for me.

"For the life of me, I can't figure it out."

Try DFA Belliard. Remember, Willie Harris can play backup 2B, especially since there will be less room for him in the OF now.

Posted by: section417 | June 30, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Here's the 25-man, as of this morning.
I don't think they want to go with only 11 pitchers, but unless they DL someone (Nick, just out of habit?), I think they cut Colome, or send Detwiler down.

Pitchers
97 Joe Beimel
36 Tyler Clippard
43 Jesus Colome
48 Ross Detwiler
38 Joel Hanrahan
31 John Lannan
54 Mike MacDougal
19 Scott Olsen
35 Craig Stammen
50 Julian Tavarez
41 Ron Villone
27 Jordan Zimmermann

Catchers
7 Josh Bard
23 Wil Nieves

Infielders
10 Ronnie Belliard
12 Alberto Gonzalez
15 Cristian Guzman
6 Anderson Hernandez
24 Nick Johnson
11 Ryan Zimmerman

Outfielders
34 Elijah Dukes
44 Adam Dunn
22 Willie Harris
25 Austin Kearns
16 Josh Willingham

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

This trade must be part of the Buccos plot to draft Bryce Jordan next season!!! Good luck to Lastings and Joel hopefully the change in environment will re-start their careers. Welcome Sean and Nyjer!

Posted by: markfd | June 30, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

unless they patterson Kearns...

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Morgan has a great attitude and will be useful in clubhouse.

However, he is much better in left than in center IMO. He is an improvement over Lastings and Dukes out there though.

Posted by: Pensfans | June 30, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Honduras DFA'd Zelaya.

Posted by: Ted_Striker | June 30, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

OK, so before the news comes out lets all take bets on who gets released from the roster to make room.

Kearns?

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | June 30, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

"And on that point, whatever happened to players that can play defense AND drive in runs?"

It's extremely tough to trade for such players when you have nothing to offer in return.

Posted by: section417 | June 30, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

GNT

Belliard.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 30, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

I thought they sent him down, to work on his stealing.
*********
Honduras DFA'd Zelaya.
Posted by: Ted_Striker

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

"I'd rather see a couple of B-level A (or AA)-ball prospects come to the Nats than an unneeded ML player." jcville

How do we not need a good defensive centerfielder who can steal bases and score runs? You would rather stock the minors with more mediocrity? Come on! The major league team needs everything it can get. Dude!

Posted by: jmurray019 | June 30, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

To make room on the roster, I say DFA Kearns... what other option do we have? We have Colome, but we have to wait until we get another reliever (Mock? Storen? Martis?) big-league ready before we demote/oblitherate him. Personally, I love Morgan, he's one of my favorite breakout players of this year (along with Pablo Sandoval).
But it does make the batting order a little confusing. Do you keep Zim in the 4-hole? Or do you send Guzy/Johnson down, even when they've been doing so well in the 2/3 spots? Or do you drop Zim into the 5th spot behind Dunn, where there's less protection? I look forward to how Manny's gonna set up the batting order.

Posted by: jaumiusk | June 30, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Confirmed at the top of this post by Chico. More info to come.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 3:36 PM | Report abuse

If they cut Belliard, then Willie Harris becomes the only backup 2nd baseman.

I guess I can live with that.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:36 PM | Report abuse

@markfd - The Pirates can feel free to draft Bryce Jordan. I'll be watching for who drafts Bryce Harper.

Posted by: Brian_ | June 30, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

our long nationals nightmare has ended!

Posted by: surly_w | June 30, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse


Anybody know LDO's VORP? 506?
__________________________
Dear Mr. Rizzo,

I'm not sure if you received my highlight reel, but I too play OF. I can steal the occasional base (on passed ball non calls), run excellent outfield routes (not directly to the ball, of course), slap the ball around the infield (mainly into double plays) and I don't make waves in the clubhouse (so long as I can play my music).

If, sir, you are in fact trying to create a 40 man roster full of outfielders, I am your man. You will lose my revenue as a season ticket holder unfortunately, but I do promise to bring sliced oranges to every Thursday day game.

Sincerely,

LDO

Posted by: lowcountry | June 30, 2009 3:39 PM | Report abuse

if the nats DFA belliard, then kearns will be the chief right-handed pinch-misser off the bench.

Posted by: surly_w | June 30, 2009 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Any idea if Manny name-dropping Nyjer on bloggers day concerning basestealing was an omen?

Posted by: VelocityAtrocity | June 30, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Webber: IMO, Burnett replaces Hanrahan in the bullpen - Morgan comes to the 25-man, bumping Belliard (Gonzalez & Harris can fill the IF backup roles, and Harris will still see some OF duty as well).

Posted by: BinM | June 30, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

"If they cut Belliard, then Willie Harris becomes the only backup 2nd baseman."

The Attorney General can play second. Just started there the other day actually.

Posted by: section417 | June 30, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

I heard Morgan on XM last week (one of the Stern channels) and he was quite the interview. I think his attitude will be a welcome addition. I remember thinking when I heard the interview that I wished the Nats a guy like this with them and presto...its happened. Now let me see if I can telepath a few more to DC. scary

Posted by: cokedispatch | June 30, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Honduras DFA'd Zelaya.

Posted by: Ted_Striker | June 30, 2009 3:33 PM

Ha!

Posted by: Kev29 | June 30, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

"I'm saying it forever, the only way to win is to score more runs than the other team. If you keep the other team from getting any runs and you don't get any yourself, you still don't win."

Posted by: Section506

I thought we tried the score runs/forget defense and pitching philosophy for the first few months this season. Didn't work according to plan, as I recall. Since we have proven that our hitters are wildly inconsistent then it would seem that building a consistently good defense might be the way to go. Somebody in Nats management forgot that you can not build a team with DH types. That total lack of defense was supposed to not matter. Oooops.

Posted by: driley | June 30, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

We may feel pangs of regret later. One of them (yes, maybe even Hanrahan) might turn into a real deal. But I like the trade and am willing to risk some "growing pains."

Posted by: lowcountry | June 30, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

"Anybody know LDO's VORP? 506?"

Despite the fact that he has missed some posting time, which will require me to rerun the calculations (including buying some new live chickens to sacrifice -- it's the key part of the whole formula), I can assure you that it's over 100.

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

@section417 -

Forgot about Belly. Another option to be considered, indeed.

Can't imagine you would make this move to force you to cut Kearns. I'll say this, if the Lerners allowed Riz to make this move and eat $4M, give or take, that says something about their cheapness.

:ducks:

Posted by: WebberDC | June 30, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Burnet seems to be having a nice year, with a 3.06 ERA and 1.14 WHIP over 38 games, a healthy span over which to demonstrate his ability. I like that he was a former blue-chipper, a first-rounder. As to Morgan, he walks some, which is more than you can say for a lot of the guys the Nats pick up. The key to the trade is that these guys are affordable. Of course there are better options out there, but who among our posters can name better options within the Nats' price range? Morgan makes $411,500 while Burnet makes $408,500. Rizzo probably did as well as he could within his narrow financial parameters.

Posted by: EdDC | June 30, 2009 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Well, maybe a hint.

********
Any idea if Manny name-dropping Nyjer on bloggers day concerning basestealing was an omen?
Posted by: VelocityAtrocity | June 30, 2009 3:40 PM |

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Think about Verlander, Beltran, and Hanley Ramirez please!
____________________________________
Now let me see if I can telepath a few more to DC. scary

Posted by: cokedispatch

Posted by: lowcountry | June 30, 2009 3:44 PM | Report abuse

WebberDC

LAC is waiting for you in the alley.

Posted by: surly_w | June 30, 2009 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Deal is done, announced on the Nats site by Ladson.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:44 PM | Report abuse

What I don't get is what Pittsburgh sees in Hanrahan.

Posted by: Juan-John | June 30, 2009 3:44 PM | Report abuse


heehee, you guys are on a roll!

---

"Anybody know LDO's VORP? 506?"

Despite the fact that he has missed some posting time, which will require me to rerun the calculations (including buying some new live chickens to sacrifice -- it's the key part of the whole formula), I can assure you that it's over 100.

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:42 PM

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile back in the minors, former Nats prospect Billy Traber (a lefty) beats Bergmann in the 14th. Another blown save/hold for Bergmann.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:45 PM | Report abuse

You know the other part of this that has only been touched on is that of the 'long term pieces' we have right now, only four of five of them are pitchers. Teaching kids to pitch with our outfield does so much more bad than good because these kids are going to be scared of throwing strikes. This move does a lot to protect, and aid the development of, Martis, Stamen, Detweiler, Zimermann...

And that to me is worth five Lasting Milledges.

The Plan lives. Build through pitching!

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 3:46 PM | Report abuse

does this mean that tavarez is now the keeper of the golden gas can?

Posted by: surly_w | June 30, 2009 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Good old Billy Traber.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 3:46 PM | Report abuse

At first glance I liked this deal...until I remembered that Morgan is 29 and the Nats already have what seems like 23 OF on the major league 25 man roster. I don't understand what the Nats really gain here. A lefty specialist who also would stink as a closer??

The next guy out of town absolutely needs to be Dukes. I remember reading not too long ago that according to an unnamed Nats player, Milledge and Dukes couldn't co-exist together in the same clubhouse, but of the two, Dukes made everybody else miserable too. Dukes NEEDS to go.

This team needs to rid itself of nearly every Jim Bowden trade acquisition and start over. I have no idea what Willingham's doing in Washington either. He should be traded but nobody wants him I'm sure. Kearns needs to go too. Nick Johnson should go, but he'll probably hurt himself again before Rizzo can make a deal.

Posted by: CJMARTIN04 | June 30, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

The Bucs were going after Hanrahan. They will probably make him a starter.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

How fast can a jet get from Pittsburgh to Miami....not fast eneough!!

Posted by: cokedispatch | June 30, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Isn't it funny that Manny said yesterday that he would keep the lineup the way it is (with Willie leading off) for one more day and if we won he would keep it. Well, we lost and the only thing changing in the lineup is Morgan instead of Harris.

Posted by: FloresFan | June 30, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

I think Kearns should be the one to go just because Belliard can play more positions. We do have Gonzalez backing up at both middle infield spots in addition to Harris, so 2B depth is not really a concern. But we're adding an OF so an OF should go, which brings us to Kearns.

No way the send down a pitcher to make room for Morgan though. I'm glad we don't have to give Hanrahan away though. But he's done here. He's failed as a starter and now he's failed as a reliever. Time to give somebody new a shot, so enter Burnett.

I've read that the Reds may be interested in Willingham as a cheaper alternative to Dye or Holliday. The Hammer is pretty cheap which will help his trade value.

Posted by: sec307 | June 30, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Good point, soundbloke.

I think that they'll continue to share it in a "team" effort, surly.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Tavarez or Villone gets DFA'ed ... probably Villone because of his age.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

"If they cut Belliard, then Willie Harris becomes the only backup 2nd baseman."

The Attorney General can play second. Just started there the other day actually.

----

So can Morgan, acquired last week. Willie Harris is gone. Will it be today or tomorrow?


Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

@jmurray: You're right -- we can use a leadoff/center-fielder now, but I'd still rather stock up on some prospects who will be around and/or ready when this club is actually halfway decent.

Posted by: jcville | June 30, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Also even with Belliard Harris is the only back up 2nd baseman. Well, he and Gonzalez but then I think Guzman is on the block too.

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Eh, I take that back. Bad mojo. Where are those live chickens? No more bullpen flambee, please.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

looks like it's time to head to the locker room and see who gets called into the manager's office...

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Funny only in Nats and Pirate land will this deal even make a ripple. Nationally not a word. Maybe a whisper in NY cause of Milledge on the move again. Otherwise, this is a non-news event.

Posted by: dovelevine | June 30, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Seems like one and maybe two of our current outfielders are going to be leaving one way or another in the relatively near future. Most likely Willingham (via trade, as noted by Olney this morning) and Kearns (via waivers). That would leave an outfield of Dunn, Morgan/Harris and Dukes.

Posted by: jcj5y | June 30, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Methinks that duty would fall on Ms. Shipley, sec3, as Chico is still in DC.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 3:52 PM | Report abuse

"So can Morgan, acquired last week. Willie Harris is gone. Will it be today or tomorrow?"

I meant Morse, of course. And it rhymed, so you know it's all fine.

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Both Maxwell and Patterson have potential. Maxwell is the younger ... still young enough to make the leap ... but they still need another guy ... Daniel was looking good for the Senators last year, did not do as well this year.

I still think Dunn, Willingham, and Guzzy need to go. Nick needs to stay ... closest they will ever get to a Texiera for now.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Harris plays the OF and the middle IF. I think Harris stays.

Posted by: periculum | June 30, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

"I thought we tried the score runs/forget defense and pitching philosophy for the first few months this season. Didn't work according to plan, as I recall. Since we have proven that our hitters are wildly inconsistent then it would seem that building a consistently good defense might be the way to go. Somebody in Nats management forgot that you can not build a team with DH types. That total lack of defense was supposed to not matter. Oooops."

I never said pitching doesn't matter. It does. The games we've won this year have had pitching and hitting, not pitching and defense.

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:55 PM | Report abuse

I think Villone goes...

Posted by: FloresFan | June 30, 2009 3:55 PM | Report abuse

For the Pirates, this trade is all about youth and potential. They're obviously in a rebuilding mode. (I don't know what kind of mode the Nats are in, by the way).

Look at the main details for the Pirates:

Milledge: just-turned 24-year-old already with significant major league experience. He can become a corner outfielder for them vs. having to play center for the Nats. The Pirates also have their leadoff guy already in McCutchen, so they can put Milledge farther down in the batting order--maybe 6th or 7th.

Hanrahan is 27, but has been terrible for the Nats. Obviously, he's still relatively young, but not exactly a spring chicken in the baseball world. They're obviously hoping that he can turn it around in a new environment where the bullpen isn't as big of an issue. Maybe they want to convert him back to a starter. Who knows?

Nyler Morgan is 28, so he's a little bit older, yet has never established himself as a major leaguer. Part of that could be the people who were in front of him, but in his two previous seasons at the major league level, he played in 28 and 58 games, respectively.

He's become an everyday player this year and has hit .270 with 18 steals (in 28 attempts, so not the best ratio here). Still, he probably becomes the best centerfield candidate for the Nats even though he's spent most of his time in the corner positions. He also is a leadoff candidate, hitting .275 in that spot with a .356 OBP. The OBP isn't so hot for a leadoff guy, but it's better than Guzman, Harris, and Hernandez.

Burnett is a little younger than Hanrahan (26), but has been much more effective pitching out of the bullpen this year, going 1-2 with a 3.06 ERA and a very good 1.14 WHIP. He's also a lefty--you can never have enough of them, right? He has had success against both lefties (.189 against) and righties (.211 against).

I hate giving up on Milledge, but wonder if he could have ever gotten his head back on straight for the Nationals. You hate to see a team lacking talent give up on a guy who was a 1st-round pick (#13 overall), but, given how low his trade value is right now, I think that they got just about all that they could have gotten for him.

What really makes the trade though is Burnett. Had Hanrahan had any options, he would be in the minors right now, but he doesn't so getting a major-league lefty back for him is a great addition.

Obviously the Pirates really see something in Milledge and think that he can turn into a great player over the next few years. If he does, the Nats will definitely regret the trade, but, judging it over the next year or two, you have to like it for the Nats. Strangely, that's the way that most people characterized the trade in which the Mets traded Milledge for Ryan Church and Brian Schneider.

Posted by: hooameye | June 30, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

"Harris plays the OF and the middle IF. I think Harris stays."

So does Mike Morse. Holding on to Harris would be malpractice. Sweet, sweet, enjoyable, blessed malpractice.

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

This club is already "halfway decent" - they just haven't shown it on the field. This deal potentially makes us better tomorrow; it won't save the season or bring us a pennant but it might enable some of our young pitchers to start experiencing success.

And Morgan gives us some speed - something that we have had a dirth of for some time now. (and yes, speed isn't any good if you can't hit and play the game but I'm willing to give him a chance)
_____________________________
@jmurray: You're right -- we can use a leadoff/center-fielder now, but I'd still rather stock up on some prospects who will be around and/or ready when this club is actually halfway decent.

Posted by: jcville

Posted by: lowcountry | June 30, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I see no reason to keep Johnson. He is a 3 month rental right now, and hence has no value to us. The only argument for keeping him is that if you also move Dunn we have no one at first unless the combination of those four yields a 1st baseman.

I think try Maxwell, because we have nothing to lose. Morgan can play anywhere. So play him in left or centre depending on who he is playing with.

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 3:57 PM | Report abuse

"I never said pitching doesn't matter. It does. The games we've won this year have had pitching and hitting, not pitching and defense."

Defense can be the one constant on a bll club. Teams with good defense usually have better records. Go to the stats.


Posted by: JDB1 | June 30, 2009 3:57 PM | Report abuse

No way Harris goes, unless via trade.

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | June 30, 2009 3:57 PM | Report abuse

would the angels trade 1B kendry morales, 2B howie kendrick and SS maicer izturis for the dunnkey, guzman and nick the stick? the nats could move lotsa salary for three infielders under 30.

Posted by: surly_w | June 30, 2009 3:57 PM | Report abuse

joebleux,
Good one BUT,don't dis Kenny Kelly.
I caught a fowl ball off of his bat on 9/11/05 at RFK and then got him to sign it in Viera the next Spring before he disappeared into Nats centerfield hasbeenland.
I love(d) Kenny...

Posted by: alm1000 | June 30, 2009 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Some teams get Jason Bay from the Pirates. Others get Nyjer Morgan. You do the math.
Oh well.

Posted by: dovelevine | June 30, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Not sure why anyone doesn't like this trade in the short term. We get an effective reliever for a completely ineffective one, and we get a true centerfielder for a guy who might as well rename himself to "upside." Because that's all he is: a head case corner outfielder on a team with better corner outfielders. Dunn, Willingham and Dukes are all going to be here in 2010; who is Milledge planning on beating out if he stays?

Let Morgan do a better impersonation of what Willie Harris has been doing over the past two weeks. And put Burnett and his 134 era+ in our gas-can filled bullpen. Sounds fantastic to me.

Posted by: tboss | June 30, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Not a good trade at all... Unfortunately, no trade without giving something up is going to help. Moving Nick Johnson wil give you multiple players. I know he is the only constant but you have to give to get this trade is exactly that... getting rid of young waste for an older waste.

Posted by: rvanags | June 30, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Can we include Acta in this trade?

Posted by: dovelevine | June 30, 2009 4:00 PM | Report abuse

The Sox may have received Bay, but they gave up a hell of a lot more than Lastings Milledge

Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 4:01 PM | Report abuse

"Teams with good defense usually have better records. Go to the stats."

Most teams that win the World Series have error numbers within a standard deviation of the mean. Go to the stats.

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Pirate fans are quite upset at this deal from what I've been reading. I pray they are right about this deal.

Posted by: cokedispatch | June 30, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

"Harris plays the OF and the middle IF. I think Harris stays."

"So does Mike Morse. Holding on to Harris would be malpractice. Sweet, sweet, enjoyable, blessed malpractice."

Mike Morse is a minor leaguer, not even on the 40 man roster. Just like the guy they traded for him, Langerhans. Willie Harris had nothing to worry about when Langerhans was here, and neither does he have anything to worry about from the presence of Mike Morse.

Posted by: section417 | June 30, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

And I'm a millionaire, it just doesn't show in my bank account.

**************
This club is already "halfway decent" - they just haven't shown it on the field.
Posted by: lowcountry | June 30, 2009 3:56 PM

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 4:03 PM | Report abuse

new post.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 30, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Setting aside the Blastings/Morgan component (ugh - although I am admittedly a Blastings apologist), the thing that freaks me out about Burnett is ... well, pretty much everything:

His BABIP is .218, so the guy has been getting lucky and is probably due to regress (and Lord knows our defense will be glad to help him out on that front). In fact, look at his IFH% - 2.8%. Must be iron in the water and they're all wearing magnets?

Further, this explains why he's given up half as many hits and has 1/3 the ERA of Joel - he's getting lucky on fielding.

BUT WAIT! THERE'S MORE!

On the FB/GB front, they're basically a wash although JH is a little better - 1.27 GB/FB vs. 1.20 for Burnett.

Burnett throws fewer Ks too - K/BB for JH is 2.5 compared to 1.53 for Burnett. And Burnett's issuing more BB/9 (4.18) than JH (3.86).

I'm not sure what the hell just happened here, but the Nats just managed to *DOWNGRADE* the bullpen. That's astounding. Sean, welcome to GASOLINE ALLEY. Here's your complimentary matches.

Posted by: neato_torpedo | June 30, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

dovelevine:

What's sad is that the Jason Bay was traded away from the Expos in 2002.

For Lou Collier.

And who owned the Expos at that time?

MLB.

J'accuse, Bud Selig.

Posted by: diogenes_quixote | June 30, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Why not try Colome there? He's tall. Or Clint?

****************
I think try Maxwell [at first base], because we have nothing to lose.
Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 3:57 PM

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

cokedispatch- You and I must have been skimming different Pirates blogs' comments. The comments I've been reading all seem optimistic about the trade (for the pirates). Many commenters were sorry to see Nyger go, but most said they think the Pirates got better baseball players in the deal.

I'd have to agree- I'm not excited about this deal for the Nationals myself. We filled a need for this season with Morgan, but we got 0 upside- both these players are showing you the most they have right now. It helps us today, but it does not make the Nationals better next year and beyond. I'd rather us forget this season and worry about 2010 and beyond when making trades- especially for young talent. Millege and Hanrahan were not performing NOW, but I think they both have the potential to "click" and become good to great players in the near future.

Posted by: cheeseburger53 | June 30, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

On MLBtraderumors, there are more comments on this than on the Pirate/Yankee trade of Hinske...

"Funny only in Nats and Pirate land will this deal even make a ripple. Nationally not a word. Maybe a whisper in NY cause of Milledge on the move again. Otherwise, this is a non-news event."

Posted by: dovelevine | June 30, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: goexpos2 | June 30, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Screech would present a good target for Zimm's throws.

---

Why not try Colome there? He's tall. Or Clint?

****************
I think try Maxwell [at first base], because we have nothing to lose.
Posted by: soundbloke | June 30, 2009 3:57 PM

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | June 30, 2009 4:07 PM |

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Given his recent weight loss, he might be pretty good as far as stretches as well.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 30, 2009 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Woohoo!!

HAMMER TIME!

Duh, duh, duh, duh,

Duh, duh,

Duh, duh

Posted by: inthestreetindustry | June 30, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Potential? Forget potential!! The Nats need players now not in 5 years. We haven't been a winning team (or .500 team) since our first year here in DC. No trades for prospects that we never see pan out.... Triple A level guys or better.

Oh yeah, Manny must GO!!!!!

Posted by: punchdaclock | June 30, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

I already knew I was not half the armchair manager that you folks can be, but now you're just rubbing it in my face that I have zero armchair GM'ing skills.

So all I can say to this is: "yay, go nats."

That, and this volley is excellent:::::


"And on that point, whatever happened to players that can play defense AND drive in runs?"

Shh, GoNats Terps, your making me nostalgic for times I can't remember!

Posted by: Section506 | June 30, 2009 3:24 PM

Posted by: ihatewalks | June 30, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Sometimes, I do not get this board. You all were unanimous in your disdain for Milledge and none saw any reason for keeping him in the organization. Now that he is gone, HALF (or so it seems) of the NJ Planet is boo hooing that Milledge was going to be great why couldn't Management be more patient, etc etc. Also, please do not undervalue Maxell. He is slowing improving his batting in AAA and he is an adequate center fielder. At least, no one has changed his tune about Hanrahan.

Sec 204 Row H Seat 11

Posted by: adhardwick | June 30, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

periculum: Patterson had potential 4 years ago; now, he's just a good CF who can't hit his weight in the ML. Maxwell, while a local kid, hasn't been able to hit for a decent average at AAA, and he's not getting younger; he's more a 4th/5th OF than a starter, imo.

Morgan/Harris/Bernardina are the present & near-future for this team in CF. That should get the team to 2011-12, when draft picks like Curran/Higley/Sferra are ready to make the jump.

Posted by: BinM | June 30, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

>Not sure why anyone doesn't like this trade in the short term.

Because they're 30 games under .500 and all they sell to the fans is the future. And it's not like they can flip these guys for someone else. You can forget about that.

What will probably happen is that more of the overhyped prospects (Balester, Martis, Stammen, etc.) will start struggling, but still be at an age where other teams think they can rescue them, and they'll end up getting players in return that may be farther along in development (like this one), but utterly useless in the big picture. There was no need to dump Milledge, especially since he was INJURED, which is the worst time to ship someone off, because if he comes back and gets hot, then what's he worth? They have him under control for years, what's the hurry? Sooner or later the light would have clicked on after he got sick of riding buses and not making any money, and he probably would have hit his way back to the bigs at some point. Nothing wrong with that guy's stroke, it was purely in his approach.

Posted by: Brue | June 30, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Score this one Pirates 2, Nationals 0.

Congrats to Mr. Huntington (Pittsburgh GM) in his utter evisceration of Mike Rizzo here. Morgan had absolutely no business starting as a major league corner OF, but the Pirates did well to pretend he did and then parlay a flukey first half into some value. And Hanrahan for Burnett, well, that's just icing on the cake. Joel still has a live arm, and while he may or may not pan out, it is clear that Burnett won't.

I understand that Milledge had "an attitude". A lot of very talented ball players have that coming up. It's unfortunate. The solution however isn't to cut off your nose to spite your face.

I can just imagine Rizzo's thought process on this one: "That punk. Thinks he's the be-all and end-all and he hasn't done anything yet. I'll show him! I'll send him away for a bag of scuffed balls. That will make him feel small and put him in his place. Yeah, that's the ticket. Now, to find the worst return I can possibly get..."

I'm sure Milledge will feel small and properly chastized while patrolling left field for the Bucs, earning millions as an average major league starting OF - as Morgan finishes his career as the AAA roster filler/occasional backup OF that he has written all over him. If Hanrahan puts it back together, Rizzo can rationalize that losing him was just the price he had to pay to really "stick it" Milledge.

Way to go, Mike! You showed him! Hey, I hear Adam Dunn strikes out too much. Maybe you should trade him for a utility infielder. That'll teach him. You go, boy.

Posted by: B2O2 | June 30, 2009 4:50 PM | Report abuse

can't wait to watch nyjer run, I know he'll be favorite of mine because freakish speed seems to make me forget all of a player's shortcomings

Posted by: bford1kb | June 30, 2009 5:59 PM | Report abuse

>can't wait to watch nyjer run, I know he'll be favorite of mine because freakish speed seems to make me forget all of a player's shortcomings

He needs a freakish OBP if he wants to make a difference with this club. It's up to him.

Posted by: Brue | June 30, 2009 6:20 PM | Report abuse

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