ATLANTA, GA - Left fielder Michael Morse #38 of the Washington Nationals swings during the game against the Atlanta Braves (Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images)
Mike Morse signed a contract extension with the Washington Nationals.
Nationals first baseman/outfielder (and former Mariners shortstop!) Mike Morse had a breakout year in 2011. The 29-year-old picked up a few down-ballot MVP votes after hitting .303/.360/.550 with 31 homers. Not bad for a guy who didn't win his first starting job until he was 28. And now he'll be a National for a long time. From Bill Ladson:
Michael Morse agreed to terms on a two-year deal with the #Nats.
If you squint, this could mean the end of the Nationals' pursuit of Prince Fielder. Though as of now, the Nationals are still planning to have Adam LaRoche back at first base if nothing else changes in the offseason, which means that they consider Morse to be an outfielder first. This extension probably has nothing to do with Fielder in any capacity.
Morse was arbitration-eligible for the second time in his career, and he is still scheduled to be a free agent after the 2013 season, as this contract didn't buy out any of his free-agent years. This is also as good a spot as any to remind you that Jayson Werth's contract runs for six more years, but we should probably just focus on the Morse deal.
Update: the contract is worth about $10.5 million.