And the Nats go and trade their closer and sign their shortstop to an extension.
First, we'll discuss the Rauch deal:
Tim Dierkes of MLBTradeRumors.com figured Bowden would ask for more than just IF Emilio Bonifacio for Rauch.
MLB Fleece Factor thinks it is a pretty good deal for both teams.
National Fanboy Looser thanks Rauch for a job well done and asks if it's a good deal or not.
Fire Jim Bowden says "at first blush this is the kind of deal we should be doing."
We've Got Heart also figured the Nats would get more prospects for Rauch.
Bleacher Banter's intitial reaction is positive.
Something interesting I wanted to pass along (from Nationals Journal commenter "e"):
My first reaction is that we got a decent player in a position of need. I think we could have gotten more for Rauch (perhaps another low-level prospect), but if this was Rauch's market, I'm happy. I heard rumors of Reid Brignac for Rauch, which would have made me happier, but this is fine. I'd also like to point out that the trade is with Arizona, which means Bonifacio is a Rizzo boy. I like Rizzo's guys.
I'm looking for Joel Hanrahan to become the new closer rather than Saul Rivera. Hanrahan's numbers are good enough for the role (although Rivera's are a bit better), but Hanrahan seems like a better option for the long-term (Hanrahan is 26, Rivera is 30). I'd rather see him learn into the role now (since he's got electric stuff) when we don't have many legitimate options in the back of the pen. (side note-it's amazing that this is the first time I've ever tagged Saul Rivera in an entry. He's that non-descript, I guess). Ryan Wagner is probably going to replace Rauch on the 25-man roster.
Now to Guzman-Mark Zuckerman of the Washington Times says the deal is $8 mil per year for 2 years. That seems a bit steep, considering he did basically nothing in years 1-3 of his current contract, but it does seem he has turned his career around for the most part. At this point, I don't think the price even matters, since we already know the Lerners aren't going to spend any money anyways.
And the current polls on Nationals Journal indicate that there is widespread approval (82% at this time) of Guzman's signing, but mild skepticism (58% approval) concerning the Rauch trade.