- Denard Span is traded for an upgrade at second base
This would be a rather drastic move for a contender to make, especially considering how well the Nationals have been playing of late, but it would be killing several birds with one stone.
First, it would allow the team to move Ryan Zimmerman back to left field, which is likely to be his long-term home given the issues with his shoulder and throwing the ball across the diamond.
That would mean Anthony Rendon, who was playing Gold Glove-caliber defense at third when Zimmerman was sidelined, could move back to the hot corner.
Bryce Harper would slide over to center field to replace Span, and the only questions would be who plays second base and who hits leadoff.
Span is raking in July with a .357/.423/.414 line, and if the team could find a way to flip him for a viable everyday option at second base, it would be a huge win-win.
This is all hypothetical, though, and is probably one of the bigger long shots among these projected best-case scenarios.
- A veteran left-hander is added to the bullpen
The Nationals went without a reliable lefty reliever for most of last season, and it's an issue that has cropped up once again this year.
Jerry Blevins (43 G, 4.71 ERA) was acquired in the offseason to try to alleviate the issue, but he has actually put up worse numbers than Ian Krol did serving in a similar role last year.
Ross Detwiler is the only other lefty in the bullpen, and while he has a 3.56 ERA in 29 relief appearances, he has not pitched in many high-leverage situations.
There are several solid options on the market, with the rival Atlanta Braves targeting the same crop of arms that includes Miller, Russell, Wright, Bastardo, Sipp, Cotts and Perez. Look for them to land one of those guys in the days to come.
Unless otherwise noted, all stats are courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com and cover games through Thursday, July 24. All injury information comes via MLBDepthCharts team pages, per Baseball Prospectus.
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