Nationals Sign First Baseman Adam LaRoche

Posted by Dave Nichols | Tuesday, January 04, 2011 | , , , | 0 comments »

Multiple sources confirm the Washington Nationals have signed free agent first baseman Adam LaRoche to a two ear deal, reportedly for $16 million total.

LaRoche is a left-handed hitting eight-year veteran who averages .271/.339/.488 with 25 homers and 93 RBIs per 162 games throughout his career.

LaRoche has hit exactly 25 home runs each of the last three seasons, including in 2010 with Arizona.  His slash line of .261/.320/.468 were all below career norms however.

The 30 year old is considered a good fielder, though advanced metrics don't really bear that out, as his UZR/150 ranked him in the bottom third of qualifying first baseman last season.

LaRoche was the "last man standing", as one-by-one the Nats watched first base candidates sign elsewhere this off-season, including Carlos Pena with the Chicago Cubs and Derrick Lee with the Baltimore Orioles.

The Nationals lineup is now pretty well set, as LaRoche will slide into the fourth or fifth spot in the lineup with Ryan Zimmerman and Jayson Werth in the heart of the order.

We'll have more analysis and opinion on the Nats latest signing tomorrow.