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Rumors swirl about Nats' Johnson

Rumors swirl about Nats' Johnson

WASHINGTON -- Nationals first baseman Nick Johnson has been mentioned in trade rumors of late. The Red Sox are said to be scouting Johnson, but the truth is, according to a baseball source, Washington and Boston haven't talked since April.

If the Nationals decided to trade Johnson, they would want a pitching prospect in return.

Asked about the possibility of being traded to the Red Sox, Johnson said, "They have a very good ballclub and they have a good chance of going to the postseason. But I play baseball. I let everything else take care of itself."

There is also speculation that the Mets may have interest in Johnson after Carlos Delgado was lost for 10 weeks due to hip surgery. However, for now, the Mets plan to stick with Daniel Murphy and Fernando Tatis at first.

Another baseball source said if Murphy and Tatis are not productive, the Mets plan to call the Nationals about Johnson.

Entering Wednesday's action against Pirates, Johnson is hitting .333 with four home runs and 24 RBIs. He is in the last year of a three-year, $16.5 million contract.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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