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Morning Commute: Why Are The Nationals Waiting On Trading Adam Dunn?

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I realize that all general managers have to play a game of chicken when negotiating a trade. You demand more than you actually expect to receive, and eventually, you come to an agreement that's more in line with your expectations.

That said, I'm concerned that Nationals GM Mike Rizzo is driving too high a price for Adam Dunn. The White Sox clearly want Dunn, because they're reportedly willing to give up their top minor league prospects to acquire him. Granted, the White Sox don't have the world's best farm system, but someone like Daniel Hudson could be very helpful both now and in the future, considering the team needs more pitching depth. But Rizzo continues to insist he wants some proven Major Leaguers back, and while it would be nice to get those kinds of players, they would serve little short-term purpose, considering the team isn't likely to make the playoffs in the near future.

The problem the Nationals face in driving a hard bargain is that Dunn's value will probably never be higher. He's having an outstanding season, but as Ben Goessling points out, if the Nationals give him the four-year contract extension he desires, he is able to veto a trade in the final year of his deal. That's not something you want to give to a 34-year old making $15 million dollars. The Nationals could let him walk and receive draft picks, but those likely don't hold as much value as the White Sox's package does.

Again, I realize this is a negotiation, and Rizzo is just doing his part. But I'm also worried that the Nationals are missing an opportunity to improve their future simply because they asked for too much in return for someone they don't seem very inclined to keep long-term anyway. 

Today's must-reads from around the SB Nation network:

  • We know the Redskins are using a 3-4 defense next season, but what kind of 3-4 defense will they have? Hogs Haven discusses that question here
  • Casual Hoya recaps the performances of Georgetown players in the Kenner Summer League. 
  • Here's one last Summer League post from Bullets Forever, which spotlights second-round pick Hamady Ndiaye. 
  • Jeff Hathaway, the current UCONN athletic director and a candidate for Maryland's opening, was just named the chairman of the NCAA selection committee. Testudo Times discusses what this means for his Maryland candidacy. 
On tap at SB Nation D.C.: Brian Murphy's weekly column will run later today.