With many of the most sought-after free agent position players off the market, first baseman Adam LaRoche has seen his profile rise of late. The 33-year-old has been linked to his most recent team, the Washington Nationals, ever since the 2012 season officially ended, but a deal has yet to fall into place. The Washington Post’s Adam Kilgore is reporting that LaRoche is actively communicating with teams other than the Nationals as well to make sure he finds a home soon.
LaRoche has more leverage now than he ever has because of a very good 2012 season. Worth a career-best 3.8 WAR per FanGraphs, LaRoche hit .271/.343/.510 with a career-high 33 home runs last season. UZR also rates LaRoche highly with the glove and has done so consistently for the past several seasons, so his home run power isn’t the only attribute that makes him an attractive option at first base for teams with an opening.
LaRoche has publicly said recently that he wants to pursue a three-year contract with his next team, but it is not yet known whether or not there are any teams in on the bidding that are willing to commit to him for that long. The Red Sox are known to be Washington’s chief competition when it comes to landing LaRoche, and if Ben Cherington’s team offers a third year, they may wind up the winner in this sweepstakes.