For the last couple of weeks, everyone thought Pavano had two serious suitors: the Twins and Nationals. Then, earlier this week, Tom Boswell of the Washington Post reported that Nationals GM Mike Rizzo told him that they weren't even talking to Pavano's people.
I hear we are “the finalist” along with the Twins. We’ve never spoken to Pavano and we haven’t talked to his agent since the winter meetings.Interesting. I'm not sure if he's trying to save face here, but it does explain why there haven't been any reports about meetings being held or offers being made to Pavano Plus, despite the Nationals obvious need for starting pitching, I never really understood how Pavano fit into their plans. If you're going to sign a 35 year old pitcher like Pavano, you should do it to add depth to the middle or back end of your rotation. The Nats would be signing him to front their rotation. While Pavano is good enough to serve as the staff ace on a non-contender, it doesn't make any sense to sign him based on the contract he's demanding. The Nationals will not be a contender by the time his contract expires, so it's probably smarter for them to save up their money for a talent that will have greater long-term impact.
In other Pavano news...
According to Joe Christensen of the Star Tribune, Carl Pavano could finally make a decision about the Twins offer by Monday or Tuesday...or three weeks from now. Who knows really? These negotiations have been moving at a snail's pace, and it's not like he's fielding several others. On January 6th, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports tweeted that the Twins "were closing in on Pavano." That was nine days ago. Yesterday, Jon Heyman of SI tweeted that a Twins "deal could happen any day now." Thanks for the info Heyman, but I'll believe it when I see it.
I know the deal is inevitable, but there's no reason why it should be taking so long. Part of me wonders if Pavano's team is stringing this along in hopes that another team will get involved, thus forcing the Twins to improve their offer. It's not going to happen. There just aren't a lot of teams interested in signing an oft-injured, 35 year old pitcher to a multi-year deal.