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01/22/10 10:31 PM EST

Nationals interested in Cabrera

Free-agent shortstop could move to second base

WASHINGTON -- The Nationals continue to search for a second baseman in case they are unable to sign free-agent Orlando Hudson. In fact, they have interest in free-agent shortstop Orlando Cabrera.

If the Nationals were to sign Cabrera, the plan would be to put him at second base, while Cristian Guzman would remain at shortstop. Cabrera, 35, has played 33 games at second base, all with the Expos. The last time he played the position was in 2000.

Cabrera is coming off one of his better seasons, hitting a combined .284 with nine home runs and 77 RBIs for the Athletics and Twins. He also has been in the postseason five out of the last six years. His biggest highlight came in 2004, when he helped the Red Sox win the World Series.

As for Hudson, he is still on the market. Last week, he would not talk about negotiations with any club, but said the Nationals were still in the mix.

It is believed Hudson is asking for $9 million for 2010, which is too much for the Nationals. In fact, the club believes the Giants set the market for infielders like Hudson when they re-signed Juan Uribe to a one-year, $3.25 million contract on Jan. 5.

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