The winter meetings don't get underway until Monday, but the Washington Nationals have already completed a trade to help round out their 2013 outfield. The Nats have acquired outfielder Denard Span for minor league pitcher Alex Meyer.
Span hit .283/.342/.395 this season in 568 plate appearances, and he boasts a very similar .284/.357/.384 line for his career. He's generally known for being an exceptional defensive center fielder, with UZR and other defensive metrics ranking him among the better outfielders in the league. Span is under contract for two more seasons at $4.75 million and $6.5 million. He also has a club option for 2015 valued at $9 million, with a $500,000 buyout should the team decide to part ways with him.
Meyer is a 6'9 right-handed pitcher that the Nationals selected with the 23rd pick of the 2011 draft. He has struggled with repeating his delivery in the past, a concern not uncommon to taller pitchers. John Sickels has him listed as the No 28 pitching prospect in baseball in his preliminary rankings and had him ranked as the No 4 prospect in the Nationals organization before the 2012 season.
Meyer was originally drafted by the Boston Red Sox in 2008, but instead decided to attend the University of Kentucky, where he played for three years. He split the 2012 season between Hagerstown and Potomac, throwing 129 innings with a 2.86 ERA. His 9.7 strikeouts per nine innings is excellent, and his average of 3.1 walks per nine innings is probably better than the Nationals were expecting in his first professional season.