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Wire Taps: Washington Nationals Weekend In Review.

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WASHINGTON, DC - AUGUST 21: Jayson Werth #28 of the Washington Nationals waits to bat against the Philadelphia Phillies during the fifth inning at Nationals Park on August 21, 2011 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - AUGUST 21: Jayson Werth #28 of the Washington Nationals waits to bat against the Philadelphia Phillies during the fifth inning at Nationals Park on August 21, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Getty Images

• I've got good news and bad news. Which do you want first? The bad? OK. (Everyone always chooses the bad first.) The last Grapefruit League game of the season isn't available for viewing or listening, only following. There's no radio or tv coverage of the Washington Nationals and Boston Red Sox game this afternoon, so there's no way to watch Jordan Zimmermann's final tune-up before the regular season begins this week unless you want to stare at the box score. The good news? The Nationals take on the Red Sox tomorrow LIVE IN NATIONALS PARK!!! Who's going to the game? So while you can't watch today's game, you can watch the Nats live tomorrow and the regular season begins Thursday afternoon. Try to contain your excitement. Until then, some links and lots of 'em. RIGHT NOW!!!!


• "He slammed the brakes, parked illegally in front of the Lincoln Memorial and sprinted up the marble steps. Werth gazed up at Lincoln, awed by the scope — an accidental, only-in-D.C. epiphany." - "For Nationals’ Jayson Werth, comforts of home make all the difference" - Adam Kilgore, The Washington Post


• Twitter via @NationalsPR: "Today's lineup (@ BOS): Bernadina CF, Desmond SS, Espinosa 2B, LaRoche 1B, Nady RF, Tracy LF, Ramos DH, Flores C, Lombardozzi 3B, JZim P."

• "[Danny] Espinosa's numbers this spring haven't been all that stellar (he's hitting just .239, has an on-base percentage of .299 and is slugging .310), but he says he feels like he's in a good place entering the season." - "Final quotes from the Nats clubhouse" - Dan Kolko,

• "'It’s a joke to hear people say that just because of one year, that I hit better right-handed,' [Danny] Espinosa said. 'It was just an off season left-handed. I have no answer for that, really.'" - "Nats' Espinosa flipping the switch" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "I'm going to assume that Roger Bernadina is on the club. He's a veteran now, has had a pretty good spring following the extraction of a bothersome tooth and can spell any of the outfield positions." - "Trimming Nats' roster down to just 25" - Phil Wood, Washington Examiner

• "'Bottom line is, I got my work in,' [Stephen Strasburg] said, summarizing his spring. 'Got the innings in. Felt good some days. Felt a little off on others.'" - "Strasburg looks ahead to Opening Day" - Mark Zuckerman,

• "[Gio] Gonzalez, who hasn't pitched past the fifth all spring, threw 52 of his 81 pitches for strikes. He walked just one." - "In spring finale, Nationals left-hander Gio Gonzalez holds Cardinals in check" - Jenifer Langosch, News

• "The road to this spring has been a checkered one. Some fans drifted away during an extended period in which the franchise’s owners, the Lerner family of suburban mall developers, seemed complacent about the team’s miserable performance." - "Washington Nationals may finally meet expectations — on and off the field" - Marc Fisher, The Washington Post

• "Ryan Mattheus, Chad Durbin and Craig Stammen are the right-handers waiting in limbo as the Nationals finalize their 25-man roster..." - "It's a three man race for final bullpen spot" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "The roster lacks players who can consistently reach base, limiting the ceiling of the offense, and even its depth, an offseason priority, is in question." - "Reading into the Nats' great expectations" - Brian McNally, Washington Examiner

• "Immediately after Monday’s game, the Red Sox will bus to the airport for a flight to Washington, D.C., where they play the Nationals on Tuesday in the final exhibition game before Thursday’s opener at Detroit." - "Takeaways from Fort: Ross' many talents" - Rick Weber, Boston Red Sox Blog - ESPN Boston

• "After Gio Gonzalez’s start today, the talk did not center on Gonzalez’s seven strikeouts in five innings..." - "Gio Gonzalez’s final spring training start is a hit" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "Gio Gonzalez didn't just throw five very impressive innings today in his final outing before the start of the regular season, he also delivered his first base hit since high school." - "Maldonado reassigned, Gonzalez reacts to final spring start" - Dan Kolko,

•"'There have been years the organization has obviously struggled,' second baseman Danny Espinosa said. "But we’re at a stage now with our pitching and our offense, there’s no reason we shouldn’t be contending for a playoff spot.'" - "Baseball Preview — Marlins Look Strongest in the N.L." - Tyler Kepner,

• "Asked for his opinion of [Henry] Rodriguez on this day, all Nationals third base coach Bo Porter could do was whistle low. 'That'll send someone to retirement,' he said." - "Davey Johnson gets his motor running, Gio Gonzalez gets his first hit and a host of other notes from the Nationals 2-1 victory over St. Louis" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

AUDIO: "I sat down with [Davey]Johnson on Friday and talked to him about his team, his managerial style and his outlook for the upcoming season." - "Interview: Davey Johnson on the Nats new season" - Craig Heist,

• "Spring training baseball in Viera may be in the ninth inning." - "Fans fear spring baseball in Brevard is outta here" - Michael Parsons, FLORIDA TODAY |

• "[Jayson] Werth will be 39 when his current contract ends, but it was not the first time Werth had brought up his desire to play a long career." - "Jayson Werth plans on hanging out a while" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "'These guys on the Nationals are young and hungry,' Werth said. 'Maybe they can experience [the postseason] here sooner rather than later.'" - "Hitting likely will be key to Nationals' fortunes this season" - Bill Ladson, News

• "The move officially leaves 33 players in big-league camp, but that includes five players expected to open the season on the disabled list..." - "Maldonado sent to minor-league camp" - Mark Zuckerman,

• "At Triple-A Syracuse... [the] outfield will include Bryce Harper, Corey Brown and Xavier Paul." - "Nationals' minor league rosters taking shape" - Byron Kerr,

• "[Danny] Espinosa had struck out 24 times this spring, but he had been started feeling comfortable with his two-strike approach, and about his swing as a whole, from both sides of the plate..." - "Nationals-Cardinals: A tight finish and a happy manager" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "The Potomac Nationals are pleased to announce that Tim Swartz has been named as the new radio broadcaster and Director of Media Relations for the 2012 season." - "Swartz Named New Broadcaster" - Potomac Nationals News

• "Davey Johnson walked into the Nationals clubhouse after today's 2-1 win over the Cardinals with a giant smile on his face. "'That's baseball at its best,' Johnson said." - "Late-game theatrics leave Nats ready for games that matter" - Dan Kolko,

• "[Rick] Ankiel is still bothered by a tight left quad, an injury that has limited him to nine games this spring. No decision will be made until early next week." - "Trip to DL may be in Ankiel's future" - Bill Ladson, News

• "'He’s feeling better,' Manager Davey Johnson said before Ankiel hit. 'I haven’t seen with my eye how he’s feeling.'" - "Rick Ankiel takes batting practice, status remains up in the air" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "'Both [Matt] Purke and [Robbie] Ray will start down here,' Nationals director of player development Doug Harris said. 'They are little bit behind.'" - "Purke, Ray and Hague will begin season in extended spring training" - Byron Kerr,

• Your Daily Message From The Dalai Lama On Twitter (@DalaiLama): "Compassion is a mental quality that can bring us true lasting inner peace and inner strength."


• "Traded to the Washington Senators for George Case after the 1945 season, [Jeff] Heath would play in just 48 games for the Senators in 1946." - "This Date in Washington Senators History" - Art Audley, D.C. Baseball History

• "1972 Former Senators and current Mets manager Gil Hodges dies of a heart attack at West Palm Beach, Florida, two days shy of his 48th birthday." - "This Date in Washington Senators History" - Art Audley, D.C. Baseball History

• "Nationals Park has been a qualified success, poised to become much more" - William F. Yurasko, William World News

• "Thoughts On The Last Offseason Saturday" -

• "About a week ago, manager Davey Johnson finally cleared up the speculation behind the competition for that fifth spot between the two remaining competitors: John Lannan and Ross Detwiler." - "Did the Nationals Choose the Wrong Fifth Starter?" - Patrick Hilley, The Nats Blog

• Where does the Nats' Triple-A affiliate rank? - "Best AAA Baseball Stadiums" - Paul Swaney, Stadium Journey

• "Washington Nationals Spring Training Postcards: Fundamentals start in the minor leagues " - Tova Perlow, Special to District Sports Page

• "Today over at, today’s flattering profile of the 2012 Nationals includes some choice words by Jayson Werth about the presidents race, and specifically the Let Teddy Win movement." - "Jayson Werth: Teddy’s streak 'Needs to be addressed'" - Let Teddy Win!

• "That's right. We are bringing it back. Get ready for a whole new string of Former Nats Greats." - "Former Nats Greats: NL East Edition" - Mac, Capitol Baseball

• "All systems go for Gio and his haircut" - Nats Enquirer

• "I looked away for 7 seconds and Xavier Nady became the opening day left fielder. Yes due to injuries and injury concerns, it looks as if Xavier Nady might not only make the team but start opening day." - "Wait, Xavier Nady?" - Sean, Capitol Baseball

• "Nats Rule-5 lossee Spring Training Update pt 2" - Nationals Arm Race

• "Just about every Washington Nationals home opener has the same promotional item — a cap. I have several caps from Opening Day sitting around." - "I guess the home opener promo cap has Natitude" - William F. Yurasko, William World News


Mets: "The door slammed behind Johan Santana at 8:48 a.m. He sat on a black leather couch inside his manager’s office. His pitching coach and his bullpen coach accompanied him." - "Johan Santana's return to Mets' Opening Day starter is the conclusion to a long journey back" - Andy McCullough,

Marlins: "Day games at Sun Life Stadium were never much fun for the Marlins." - "Miami Marlins fall to New York Yankees, fans enjoy air conditioned park" - Clark Spence, Miami Marlins -

Phillies: "'We ain't going to lay down for anybody. We've got a bunch of guys that like to play. You can smack us. We're not going to turn the other cheek. We're going to fight you back.'" - Charlie Manuel - "Manuel: Phils still team to beat in NL East" - Paul Hagen, News

Braves: "Four months after back surgery, pitcher Tim Hudson makes his much-anticipated return to competition with a start Monday against the Mets." - "Hudson returns Monday; Pastornicky in SS lead?" - David O'Brien, Atlanta Braves

• Random MLB:

• "A lucky fan was about to win a truck, and Adam Wainwright thought it was pretty cool. Until the St. Louis Cardinals pitcher realized it was his white pickup being driven onto the field." - "April Fools: Cardinals pull off prank on Wainwright" - AP/The Globe and Mail

• "'Yeah, that’s right,' Posnanski said in a brief phone call. 'I’m leaving [SI] with mixed emotions.'" - "Joe Posnanski is Leaving Sports Illustrated" - Jason McIntyre, The Big Lead