Report: Nationals could pursue Kris Bryant trade if they don’t re-sign Anthony Rendon
The Washington Nationals may be done making major moves in free agency now that they have signed Stephen Strasburg to a record contract, but the trade market is another story. Depending on how things unfold, they could be a team to watch for superstar third baseman Kris Bryant.
The Nationals have had contact with the Chicago Cubs about a possible Bryant trade, Jon Morosi of MLB.com reports. Bryant could be a backup option for Washington if they are unable to re-sign Anthony Rendon, who is expected to fetch a massive contract after his MVP-caliber season last year.
We know of at least one team with deep pockets that wants to sign Rendon, so the Nationals may not be able to afford him now that they are paying Strasburg $245 million over seven years. Bryant has two more years of arbitration eligibility remaining and is not set to become a free agent until after the 2021 season.
The Cubs would probably need to be blown away by an offer to trade Bryant, but we know they have been discussing the possibility with multiple teams. Washington appears committed to not being a one-and-done team after its surprising World Series season last year, and their interest in Bryant is further proof of that.
Bryant hit .282 with 31 home runs, 77 RBI and an OPS of .903 last year. Rendon was more productive with a .319 average, 34 homers, 126 RBI and a whopping 1.010 OPS, but Bryant would be a nice replacement if the Nationals can’t bring Rendon back.