2B Brian Dozier, Nationals finalize $9M, 1-year deal

WASHINGTON (AP) — Free agent infielder Brian Dozier and the Washington Nationals have finalized a $9 million, one-year contract.

Washington announced the deal Sunday, three days after it was agreed to subject to a successful physical.

Dozier, who played for the Minnesota Twins and Los Angeles Dodgers last season, fills Washington’s need for a starting second baseman and could help add some power to the lineup, particularly important if slugging outfielder Bryce Harper ends up leaving as a free agent.

By only committing to Dozier for one season, the Nationals leave open the possibility of turning to leading infield prospect Carter Kieboom at second base in 2020.

Dozier batted a career-low .215 with 21 homers and 72 RBIs last year. He averaged 35 homers over the preceding three seasons, with a career best of 42 for Minnesota in 2016. He was an AL All-Star in 2015.

In 2017, Dozier led AL second baseman in fielding percentage and won a Gold Glove.

While still waiting to find out what will happen with Harper, the Nationals’ additions have included lefty starter Patrick Corbin, catchers Yan Gomes and Kurt Suzuki, relievers Kyle Barraclough and Trevor Rosenthal, and backup first baseman Matt Adams.