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Washington Nationals: Twenty-Ten Pitching Search [Updated]

• I blame this one on the outgoing Washington Post Nationals beat writer Chico Harlan for not asking DC GM Mike Rizzo the hard follow-up question when the Nationals' general manager told the Post's reporter, "We're going to get one of them," in an interview for an article entitled, "Reading Material, Shopping Lists", after the two had discussed a list of potential free agent pitchers being targeted by Washington this winter. "Do you mean only 'one', Mr. Rizzo?" If Mr. Harlan had just asked that simple question we could've been spared more than a month of speculation after Jason Marquis inked a two-year/$15 million dollar deal with DC in December, because we would have known that the "one" pitcher Rizzo was looking for had been locked up...

Because from that original list...:

"Rizzo is looking at a list that includes Jason Marquis, Randy Wolf, John Lackey, Cliff Lee, Jon Garland, Kevin Millwood, Tim Hudson, Brad Penny, Joel Pineiro, Braden Looper, Jarrod Washburn, Brandon Webb, Brett Myers, John Smoltz and more."

...only Looper, Washburn, Smoltz and "more" remain available...

...and's Jon (Paul) Morosi just Twittered that the Twins, Mets and Cubs were interested in Washburn, no mention of the Nationals, and after Ben Sheets chose Oakland over New York this afternoon, the Mets have apparently turned their attention toward Smoltz. (ed. note - "Mr. Rizzo? If you can convince the Lerners to spend a million or two more to get Smoltz just so the Mets get jilted again, I'd certainly appreciate it.") (ed. note - "And we're just going to ignore Looper and move on...")

In a post on Twitter last week,'s Jerry Crasnick wrote that he'd heard Washington was, "...looking for an affordable, 'Livan Hernandez type' for rotation insurance," before Mr. Crasnick joked, "Hey, Livan Hernandez is still available." (ed. note - "For the record, Washington Post writer Dave Sheinin reported in an early December article entitled, "Nationals notes: Dukes, L. Hernandez", that the Nationals, "...met with the agent for free agent starting pitcher Livan Hernandez, with interest on both sides in a new deal for the 34-year-old right-hander," whose agent Barry Praves was quoted assuring everyone, "The Nationals are aware that Livan would like to return to Washington next season...")

DC GM Mike Rizzo told Washington Post writer Chico Harlan in an article entitled, "Free agent targets, plaudits, poetry", "...that the Nats still want to sign a final arm for their rotation and are targeting a list of "four or five" potential players."  Four or five? Smoltz? Livan? Not sure who else? Oh,'s Jerry Crasnick just Twittered that the Nationals were one of ten teams who'll take a look at former Giants' right-hander Noah Lowry...