The Starting Nine: Nationals Links; Rumors; Info

Jonathan Ernst

So you're not sitting around monitoring Twitter, searching #Nats, sifting through aggregators and sorting through hundreds of random blog posts and stories about the Washington Nationals? We try to make it easy for you with "The Starting Nine," a collection of the stories you need to read...

We understand, sort of, not really, that not everyone can spend their offseason waiting around for some news on the Washington Nationals to break. So if you find yourself wondering what you missed in the last week, catch up every Monday morning with The Starting Nine. Nine stories that will keep you in the know as far as what's going on with the nation's capital's Nats. We're also including "The Rotation" below, the Top 5 Stories from the last week on Federal Baseball...

1. Nats Start Interviewing Managers:

"A baseball source who is familiar with [Mike] Rizzo's thinking believes Williams is on top of the Nats' managerial list, followed by Randy Knorr and Rays bench coach Dave Martinez, who has not interviewed for the position." - "Washington Nationals interview Matt Williams, Brad Ausmus in search for new manager" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com: News

2. Nats Not Interested In Dusty Baker:

3. Knorr Interviews With Nationals:

"Nationals bench coach Randy Knorr, the most popular clubhouse choice to replace Davey Johnson as manager, interviewed late last week for job, according to a person familiar with the situation." - "Nationals interviewed Randy Knorr for managerial position" - Adam Kilgore, Washington Post

4. Cal Ripken On Managing:

"'What qualifies you to be a manager in the big leagues?' Ripken said. 'That’s the question everyone asks when they go and hire a manager. Do you value experience where you work your way up and you manage in the minor leagues for 14 years like my Dad?'" - "Managing interests Orioles Hall of Famer Cal Ripken, but he's not 'soliciting' any job" - Eduardo A. Encina, The Baltimore Sun

5. Zach Walters: Backup Shortstop?:

"[Zach] Walters, 24, is ready for the challenge and hopes to prepare his body with a vigorous offseason routine in order to compete for a spot on the roster next spring, his third in big league camp with the Nationals." - "Zach Walters on his offseason, potential backup infielder role" - James Wagner, Washington Post

6. Amanda Comak Joins Nationals PR:

"An Introduction" - Amanda Comak, Curly W Live

7. More Development Around NatsTown:

"There is a growing number of places for people to live and eat by Nationals Park in Southeast D.C., but very few options for out-of-town guests to stay overnight." - "Developers consider plans for 200-room hotel by Nationals Park" - Daniel J. Sernovitz, Washington Business Journal

8. Nats' Dominican Pitchers Set To Make Impact:

"This confidence stems from how good these pitchers were with the rookie-level Gulf Coast Nationals, who dominated their league prior to easily winning the league championship." - "Suero a part of new wave of Dominican pitchers making impact in Nationals system" - Byron Kerr

9. Dan Kolko (MASN) And Mark Zuckerman (NatsInsider.com) On Rafael Soriano:

"[Rafael] Soriano threw his slider far less frequently this season than he had in the past (15.5 percent of the time in 2013, down from 40.1 percent in 2012, according to FanGraphs)." - "Nationals Pastime: Sorting through Soriano's first season in Washington" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com

Whether [Rafael] Soriano’s addition also had a negative effect on the overall chemistry of the Nationals bullpen remains up for debate." - "Nationals roster review: Rafael Soriano" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider

• Federal Baseball: The Rotation

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