Mike Rizzo keeps trade ideas in an unhackable notebook

(Evan Vucci / AP)

(Evan Vucci / AP)

The Houston Astros experienced an organization worst nightmare last week, when 10 months of their trade talks were leaked and disseminated on Deadspin after their internal computer database was hacked.

The leak revealed a few discussions with the Nationals. The Nats essentially laughed and walked away after the Astros asked for top prospect Lucas Giolito in exchange for Lucas Harrell at the trade deadline last year, and the Nationals declined to give up Nate Karns – whom they ultimately dealt for Jose Lobaton and two prospects – in exchange for catcher Carlos Corporan this winter.

During his weekly on 106.7 The Fan with Grant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier, General Manager Mike Rizzo expressed confidence the Nationals’ trade talks will not be stolen. Why? Because he keeps his ideas in a notebook.

“It’s something that every organization fears,” Rizzo said. “The new world and the new generation, we’ve put all our information down in e-mails and databases and that type of thing. It’s really something that is troublesome to learn. You hate when things are leaked out, because a lot of those trade proposals are just initial ideas and spit-balling, if you will. It would be a nightmare for us, and that’s why a lot of my trade proposals and ideas are in my notebook that’s in my briefcase. That’s why sometimes being old-school ain’t so bad.”

Grant and Danny asked if they could see the see the notebook, and Rizzo reacted as if they had asked him for permission to burn down his house.

Rizzo also addressed Bryce Harper’s comments – his suggestion that Ryan Zimmerman should stay in left field, Anthony Rendon should play third and Danny Espinosa should play second – for the first time. Rizzo called the controversy “old news” and said the Nationals had put it behind them.

“Harp’s a competitor, and he says what’s on his mind,” Rizzo said. “I think if he had the chance to take it back and say it differently, I think he would have. But he didn’t. To me, it’s old news. He’s a guy we need in the lineup. He’s going to perform very positively for the club. I think when he spoke to his teammates afterward, everything is fine. It’s old news. We put it behind us, and we’re ready to move on play baseball with, finally, our 25-man roster intact.”

Rizzo said Harper spoke with teammates and he spoke with Harper, which he called “very informative.” Denard Span said early Tuesday afternoon he had yet to discuss the comments with Harper, but Rizzo said the two have in fact spoken since.

“He has talked to them,” Rizzo said. “He’s talked to Matt Williams and myself. We’re all on the same page, and everything’s good. We’re ready to move past it.”

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