Nationals, Adam LaRoche remain far apart on new contract

Rob Carr

Talks with free-agent first baseman about a contract extension are far apart.

The Washington Nationals and first baseman Adam LaRoche are not close to reaching a new deal, MLB.com's Bill Ladson reported Monday. LaRoche, who hit a career-best 33 home runs for the Nats' last season, is a free-agent searching for a multiyear deal.

The Nationals have reportedly made a qualifying offer of $13.3 million, a deal LaRoche has until 5 p.m. ET this Friday to accept or not.

In 2011, the 32-year-old LaRoche signed a two-year, $16 million deal. However, his production this season helped Washington earn its first ever postseason berth and raised his price tag. The question now is: do the Nats', led by general manager Mike Rizzo, believe the first baseman is worth it?

Plan B is to have Tyler Moore or Michael Morse battle it out for the starting job at first base. Morse filled in as LaRoche's replacement in '11 when the veteran went down with a torn labrum. Morse is schedule to make $6.75 million in '13.

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