MLB.com Columnist

Bill Ladson

Nationals silent at Meetings despite trade talks

Nationals silent at Meetings despite trade talks

SAN DIEGO -- There have been rumblings about the Nationals potentially trading their core players such as right-hander Jordan Zimmermann and shortstop Ian Desmond. But for the most part, it was a quiet Tuesday at the Winter Meetings.

But the rumors started early in the day. MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan reported that the Rangers inquired about Zimmermann. But Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo reiterated that he still wants to sign Zimmermann to a long-term extension, though he hasn't meant with Zimmermann's representatives.

"Zim is part of the furniture here. He was drafted, signed, developed and starred with the same organization," Rizzo said. "We feel he is one of our own. We are certainly eager to discuss things with him."

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Rizzo said he met with Desmond's agent, Doug Rogalski, but Rizzo declined to say if there was progress made during the meeting. Desmond would be eligible for free agency after the 2015 season.

The only thing that Rizzo revealed was, after closer David Robertson agreed to a four-year deal with the White Sox, that opposing teams started to inquire about the Nats' relievers, especially Tyler Clippard. The Washington Post reported the Astros inquired about Clippard.

"When dominoes fall, they do change the landscape," Rizzo said. "For example, after Robertson signed, our relievers came more into focus with other clubs. We have a lot of traffic on those guys."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.