After coming up short in the postseason, the Nationals have traded RHP Alex Meyer to the Minnesota Twins for the long-coveted CF Denard Span.
The deal is being described early as a “win now” move and perhaps an indication that free-agent first baseman Adam LaRoche may not be re-signed. Also possible, but less likely: a trade involving Michael Morse (if LaRoche does sign), Brian Goodwin or Eury Perez (Span is signed through 2014 with an option for 2015).
Centerfield, of course, has been craptastic (sorry to use the technical term) for the franchise for more than a decade.
Perhaps more important: Span gives the Nats a more traditional leadoff hitter, which enables the team to drop Bryce Harper and Jayson Werth lower in the lineup and slot them into more traditional run-producing roles. Defensively, Harper will most likely slide over to left field, though it’s possible that Harper will see time in right from time to time.
The 2012 Watchlist, which is technically inactive, has been updated nevertheless to reflect the trade.