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National League

Nationals Sign Power-Hitting Lefty Matt Adams To One-Year Deal

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The Washington Nationals and first baseman Matt Adams have agreed on a one-year, $4 million deal with $500,000 in performance bonuses, reports MLB.com’s Jamal Collier; the Nationals announced the signing one week ago on Friday.

Adams, 29, split this past season with the St. Louis Cardinals and Atlanta Braves, hitting .274/.319/.522 in 339 at-bats (291 with Braves) with a career-high 20 homers (19 with Braves). He also drove in 65 runs, the second highest total of his career.

The 6’3” first baseman had been a member of the Cardinals each season since making his Major League debut in 2012 prior to being traded to the Braves in May.

Nicknamed “Big City”, the 6’3”, 260-pound Adams is known for his ability to hit tape-measure home runs, particularly against right-handed pitching. Collier reports that Adams’s career OPS is significantly higher against righties (.828) than it is against lefties (.593).

It’s expected that Adams will serve as a back-up first baseman to Ryan Zimmerman, as well as a much needed left-handed slugger off the bench against right-handers. To put his pinch-hitting in perspective, per Collier, Adams is a career .315/.342/.555 hitter with nine homers in 155 plate appearances.

Adams can also play in the outfield if needed as well. Prior to 2017, Adams had never played a position in the field other than first base; he appeared in 19 games in left field this past season.

Considering the cost and what Adams brings to the table, this is a very good signing for the Nationals.

Overall in his career, Adams is a .271/.315/.469 hitter with 75 homers and 275 RBIs in 1,720 at-bats.

Arizona Diamondbacks

Diamondbacks Sign Merrill Kelly To Two-Year Deal

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The Arizona Diamondbacks have signed right hander Merrill Kelly to a two-year, $5.5 million contract, according to Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Passan.

Kelly’s new deal will pay him $2 million in 2019 and $3 million in 2020 and includes a pair of club options. The 30-year old has never pitched in the major leagues but had an impressive four-year stint in the Korea Baseball Organization.

Kelly was a former prospect in the Tampa Bay Rays organization.

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National League

Nationals Sign Patrick Corbin

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The Washington Nationals surprisingly won the courtship of free agent pitcher Patrick Corbin, who chose the team over the New York Yankees and the Philadelphia Phillies, and will ink a six-year deal with $140 million in guaranteed money, according to FanCred’s Jon Heyman.

Washington agreed to terms with Corbin on Tuesday, according to the Washington Post’s Chelsea Janes.

Corbin will now join a rotation that features Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg.

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National League

Braves to Hire Rick Kranitz As Pitching Coach

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The Atlanta Braves are finalizing a contract with Rick Kranitz that will officially make him the team’s new pitching coach, according to The Athletic’s David O’Brien.

While no timetable for a completed deal has been reported at the time of this writing, the reports indicated that it’s now “expected” that Kranitz, who spent last season with the Philadelphia Phillies, will join the Braves organization.

Kranitz was out in Philly following the team’s decision to promote assistant pitching coach Chris Young to Kranitz’s position.

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