Washington Nationals' Free Agent Decisions: Chad Tracy

By Brian Skinnell
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

At the conclusion of the 2013 season, Washington Nationals veteran Chad Tracy’s contract expired with the team and he is now a free agent. Should the Nationals re-sign the 33-year old or should they move on?

Tracy joined the Nationals prior to the start of the 2012 season and has played a backup role at first base. Most often, we’ve seen him make pinch-hitting appearances. This past season, the pinch-hitting as a whole suffered, and Tracy didn’t do much to improve it with his play at the plate.

In 2012, Tracy made a solid contribution batting .269 and having an on-base percentage of .343. As a pinch-hitter, your main job is to keep the line going and drive in runs whenever possible. In 2012, Tracy did a solid job with 14 RBI and three home runs.

2013 brought with it many struggles for the now nine-year veteran. Tracy struggled to a .202 batting average with a very poor .243 on-base percentage. While he did hit four homers, he only had 11 RBI.

The big question now is what should the Nationals do with him? They could re-sign him, ideally something around the one-year $1 million contract that they signed him for this past season, or let him walk away. Unless he and agent Alan Nero decide that $1 million is another acceptable number, letting him walk away is the better move. The Nationals have Scott Hairston also available to pinch-hit, and he did a good job and was a definite pinch-hitting bonus this past season.

Hopefully the Nationals can re-sign Chad Tracy at a reasonable price. While he did struggle somewhat this past season, he still a dangerous bat off the bench and a solid backup first baseman. If they can get sign him to a similar deal like what they signed him to in 2013, they’ll be golden.

Brian Skinnell is a freelance sports writer for RantSports.com and contributor at Yahoo Sports. Follow him on Twitter, Like him on Facebook and add him to your network on Google.

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