The Major League Baseball lockout has put an end to the free agency frenzy. Several big names remain available but they will not be able to speak without a new collective agreement. That hasn’t stopped the Washington Nationals from adding a former star to their farming system.
The Nationals signed a deal with two-time All-Star Dee Strange-Gordon, signing him to a minor league contract. The 33-year-old utility, who played mostly on shortstop and second baseman, will likely be spending his time with the Rochester Red Wings, Washington’s AAA team.
Utility Dee Strange-Gordon and the Washington Nationals have agreed to a contract with the minor leagues, a source familiar with the deal told ESPN. Strange-Gordon was eligible to sign after failing to play in the big leagues last season. Minor league deals are allowed during lockdown.
– Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) December 11, 2021
Strange-Gordon last played for the Seattle Mariners. Prior to that, he spent three years with the Miami Marlins and four years with the Los Angeles Dodgers, winning an All-Star nod with each team. In 10 seasons, he led the majors in stolen goals on four occasions and posted a .286 / .319 / .360 slash line with 18 homers.
The Nationals could most likely call Strange-Gordon in the big leagues, as the team around superstar outfielder Juan Soto is uninspiring after winning just 65 games last season. Washington’s only notable addition this offseason has been the signing of second baseman Cesar Hernandez to a one-year contract.
Strange-Gordon’s speed and his background as an outfielder could make him a solid addition to Washington. While that deal likely would have been a minor league deal had it not been for a lockout, the Nationals’ ill-fated roster could have a place for it.