Nationals Avoid Arbitration With Victor Robles

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7:26PM: Robles and the Nationals agreed to a one-year, $1.65MM deal, according to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman.

3:21PM: The Nationals agreed to a 2022 contract with outfielder Victor Robles, The Washington Post’s Jesse Dougherty reports (Twitter link).  The deal allows both sides to avoid an arbitration hearing, as an agreement wasn’t reached prior to the deadline for submitting arb figures.  Robles was seeking a $2.1MM salary, while the Nats countered with a $1.6MM offer.  MLBTR’s Matt Swartz projected Robles for a $1.7MM deal.

This is Robles’ first time through the arbitration process, and he is on pace to hit free agency following the 2024 season.  In the near term, however, 2022 looms as a critical year for Robles to re-establish himself as a key part of Washington’s future plans.  Since emerging as an everyday member of the Nats’ 2019 World Series club, Robles has hit only .209/.304/.302 in 558 plate appearances in 2020-21.

Once considered one of the elite prospects in all of baseball, Robles now has only a somewhat tenuous hold on a starting job.  Robles is still penciled into the center field job, though some defensive metrics have painted a sour picture of his glovework following his all-world defensive numbers in 2019.

With Robles’ deal now settled, the Nationals have worked out contracts with every member of their 2021-22 arbitration class.  For more on settled and still-pending arbitration situations, check out MLBTR’s Arbitration Tracker.

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