Burnett played a major role for the Nationals last season, appearing in 70 games and posting a 2.38 ERA. While Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said the organization would like to bring him back, Rizzo said that as of right now he doesn't see a fit financially or in the length of the contract.
According to a report from Nats Insider, Washington is reluctant to give any reliever a long-term contract due to the volatility that comes with the position. With Burnett unlikely to return, the Nationals will now have to fill a major void in their bullpen. Since 2010, Burnett appeared in 212 games for the Nationals. He's considered to be the best left-handed reliever on the free-agent market and could command a contract worth as much as $15 million over three seasons.
The Nationals signed Zach Duke on Monday, and Rizzo said they would like to add another left-hander.