MLB rumors: Nationals' Anthony Rendon could be latest soon-to-be free agent to sign an extension

Free agency in the offseason appears to be headed in a not-so-exciting direction when viewed from the lens of the Hot Stove. After two slow offseasons in a row, lots of players have gone the route of signing club-friendly extensions. Might Nationals third baseman Anthony Rendon be the next to join the party? 

On Tuesday, Rendon, Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo and owner Mark Lerner met before batting practice to discuss a possible extension, Mark Zuckerman of MASN Sports reports. There's nothing really further than a meeting, but it's a sign there is a mutual interest in getting a deal done. For what it's worth, Rizzo has confirmed there was a meeting.

Further, Grant Paulsen on 106.7 The Fan said that he has heard the Nats are now more likely to get a deal with Rendon done now that Harper didn't re-sign. 

All of this makes a lot of sense. First off, of course it's more likely the Nats can re-up with Rendon now that they didn't sign Harper to something like 10 years and $300 million. People could twist this against Harper if they so choose, but it's more just about available money. 

Secondly, Rendon, who turns 29 in June, is set to be a free agent after the season and, as noted, free agency hasn't been a picnic for many players. There have been some big extensions, though, and perhaps Nolan Arenado's eight-year, $260 million extension is a guide here. He signed it with just one year left on his deal before free agency and Rendon is set to hit free agency after this season. 

Further, on Rendon's end, this is a good time to strike. Not only have all these extensions become in vogue, but he's hitting .397/.463/.845 (222 OPS+) with eight doubles, six homers and 18 RBI through 15 games. Strike while the iron is hot, no? 

Rendon's agent is Scott Boras and he's been known to take clients to free agency, but time and again you hear that Boras actually works for the player, not the other way around. If Rendon wants to sign a lucrative extension, Boras won't stand in the way. 

The best bet here is Rendon signs an extension that keeps him with the Nationals through his mid-30s. 

CBS Sports Writer

Matt Snyder has been a baseball writer with CBS Sports since 2011. A member of the BBWAA, he's now covered every World Series since 2010. The former Indiana University baseball player now lives on the... Full Bio

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