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12/02/07 12:30 AM ET

Nationals don't offer Fick arbitration

WASHINGTON -- The Nationals have decided not to offer arbitration to first baseman/catcher Robert Fick, their only Major League free agent this offseason.

Fick is a Type C free agent, meaning Washington would not receive Draft compensation if he signs elsewhere. Even though they didn't offer Fick arbitration, the Nationals can still try to sign him, according to the new collective bargaining agreement.

However, it appears 50-50 -- at best -- that Fick will return. The Nationals are looking for a starting catcher, and Fick doesn't fit in those plans.

In 2007, Fick played in 118 games and hit .234 with two home runs and 16 RBIs for Washington. His best month came in September, when he hit .319 with nine RBIs. Fick received a lot of playing time that month because of a neck injury to first baseman Dmitri Young.

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