Perspective: The Nationals should take a page out of the Braves' Playbook and start to sign some of their young star players
The Atlanta Braves front office recognized the importance of young players and have them locked up before they could command huge amounts of money. So what can the Washington Nationals learn from the Braves?
SP Spencer Strider, $75M thru '28 (Current Age: 23 years)
SP Max Fried, control thru '24 (Current Age: 28 years)
SP Kyle Wright, control thru '26 (Current Age: 27 years)
LF Marcell Ozuna, $33M thru '24 (Current Age: 31 years)
CF Michael Harris, $72M thru '30 (Current Age: 21 years)
RF Ronald Acuna, $78M thru '26 Current Age: 24 years)
3B Austin Riley, $212M thru '32 (Current Age: 25 years)
2B Ozzie Albies $25M thru '25 (Current Age: 25 years)
1B Matt Olson, $153M thru '30 (Current Age: 28 years)
C William Contreras control thru '27 (Current Age: 24 years)
What does this list have in common? Well, these are all young baseball stars that are now signed with the Atlanta Braves for the foreseeable future. Yeah, that's a true core for the future. This is pretty impressive, and a great job by the Atlanta Braves front office recognizing the importance of these players and having them locked up for a significant amount of time before they could command huge amounts of money. So what can the Washington Nationals learn from the Braves here?
Simple, start locking up some of their young players before they hit free agency. While one could argue that it's a bit early for the Nationals to realistically sign some of their young players as they are still developing, why even take the chance? We have seen great young talent leave the team once they hit free agency, which has left the Nationals.
The Nationals have some great young players on their roster, such as CJ Abrams, Keibert Ruiz, and Josiah Gray. One could even argue that Joey Meneses could fit that mold for what the Nationals should be looking for in their future players.
Could you imagine not worrying about a couple of these up-and-coming players and just letting them develop with the Nationals?
Would it be a smart move to lock up Mackenzie Gore? Cade Cavalli? Which other young Washington Nationals stars would you like the team to lock up?