Nationals Make a Minor Deal; Add Blanco From KC
The Nationals yesterday made a trade to acquire CF Gregor Blanco from the Kansas City Royals, for a player to be named later. Blanco has spent time in the majors each of the last three years with the Braves and the Royals. He is capable of playing all three outfield positions, but his primary position is center field. Blanco was no longer on the Royals 40 man roster so the Nationals don’t have to make a corresponding roster move at this time.
The Nationals have had a major issue in center field since the beginning of the season, as Rick Ankiel has been a disappointment (and is currently on the D.L.). While I don’t think the Nationals will get rid of Ankiel just yet, I doubt they give him too much longer to prove himself. With Mike Morse struggling in LF and Jayson Werth in a slump in RF, the Nationals outfield production has been truly awful.
While Blanco won’t immediately join the Nationals, he offers quality depth for Washington in AAA, and could get brought up later this season as a 4th outfielder. He hits right-handers pretty well, and is a very patient hitter, which should be an upgrade for a Nationals team that is among the league leaders in strikeouts. While I don’t see this as either the longterm or short term solution for the Nationals CF woes, this is a nice depth move that really doesn’t cost them anything.