I posted to Brian's blog a comment about the possibility of the Nats being willing to exceed the cap and forfeit a #1 next year. With EJ likely to qualify as a compensation guy and looking for a multi-year contract, he may be the type of guy you can safely offer qualifying arbitration to, hope will walk, and get a compensation pick or two. You give up one pick in the 2d half of the first round if you did blow the cap, but with a supplemental and possibly another pick coming back, the damage might not be so great.
That's interesting - I hadn't thought of that. I kind of doubt that Rizzo would be willing to give up a draft pick, but if push comes to shove, that's an interesting thought. Though I think there's an argument that they might resign EJ to a longer-term deal too.
But, the other point is even if they don't get one back, you're probably talking about a pick in the 20-25 range. It's not like giving up a top-10.
But whatevs - get him signed. I love the pick - "The Nats - We Gotz More Armz than Our Walter Johnson Statue"