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12/06/10 12:25 PM EST

LaRoche interested in signing with Nationals

Slugging first baseman likes new direction in Washington

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Free agent Adam LaRoche said Monday that he has interest in playing with the Nationals, and his representative is expected to meet with the club in the next couple of days.

LaRoche is a player whom the Nationals have had their eyes on for several months. He is a solid defensive first baseman and is coming off his best season of his career, hitting .261 with 25 home runs and 100 RBIs for the D-backs in 2010.

"In the next few days, we are going to start some conversations with the Nationals," LaRoche said via phone. "If we come on the same page, I would definitely have interest in playing for them."

LaRoche believes the Nationals are going in the right direction after agreeing to terms with outfielder Jayson Werth on a seven-year, $126 million contract on Sunday.

"I think it shows how serious the Nationals are about getting the organization back on track and becoming a contender in the National League East," LaRoche said. "They are probably tired of watching other teams [spend money and winning]. With [Nationals Park] and a little money to spend, they are looking to start over."

LaRoche has played in the big leagues for seven seasons, playing with the Braves, Red Sox and Pirates. The left-handed hitter has a .271 career average with 161 home runs and 569 RBIs.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.