The Washington Nationals have made a big move by reportedly signing 23-year-old catcher Keibert Ruiz to an eight-year deal. The contract is worth $40 million and includes two club options that could push the total value of the contract to $68 million. Ruiz was acquired by the Nationals from the Los Angeles Dodgers in the Max Scherzer and Trea Turner trade.
Ruiz is considered one of the top catching prospects in baseball, and he made his Major League debut with the Dodgers in 2020. He impressed in his 14 games with the club, hitting .286 and showing off his excellent defense behind the plate. He has also impressed in the minor leagues, putting up a .299/.353/.412 batting line over six seasons.
The Nationals were in need of a young catcher after losing their longtime catcher Yan Gomes and backup catcher Josh Harrison in the offseason. The signing of Ruiz gives them a potential long-term solution at the position.
Ruiz’s age and potential make this a smart investment for the Nationals. He has shown that he has the tools to be an excellent catcher, and an eight-year deal gives the team security at the position for years to come. Additionally, the club option gives them the flexibility to back out of the contract if Ruiz doesn’t live up to expectations.
The move also aligns well with the Nationals’ long-term plan. They have a talented group of young players that they hope will form the core of their team for years to come. Ruiz fits well into that plan, and with him as the backstop, the team will have a key piece in place for the foreseeable future.
Overall, the signing of Keibert Ruiz is a smart move by the Nationals. It gives them security at a position they were lacking heading into the season, and it solidifies their long-term plan of building a young core. Ruiz has the potential to be a star, and if he reaches that potential, this contract will look like a bargain for the Nationals.