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Wire Taps: Where Is New Washington Nationals' Closer Rafael Soriano? Where'd Danny Espinosa's Beard Go?

For a moment there, it looked like the biggest news of the morning from the Washington Nationals' Spring Training was going to be the absence of Danny Espinosa's epic beard, but then reporters noticed that Rafael Soriano had yet to turn up for the first day of workouts in Viera, Florida.

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Washington Nationals' closer Rafael Soriano was introduced to Washington, D.C. earlier this winter.
Washington Nationals' closer Rafael Soriano was introduced to Washington, D.C. earlier this winter.
via @NationalsPR on Twitter

Mike Rizzo told reporters that the decision to forego surgery on Danny Espinosa's torn rotator cuff was not made by the second baseman alone. Davey Johnson said he liked the decision his second baseman made to skip the WBC while he builds up strength in his shoulder. There was some more talk about the outfield alignment and where Jayson Werth might hit in 2013. Wilson Ramos is working his way back but he's not yet 100%. Henry Rodriguez's elbow had some tenderness. Denard Span couldn't wait to get to camp for his first year in the National League. Dan Haren's looking forward to pitching with his new teammates. Stephen Strasburg's looking forward to picking Haren's brain and learning what he can from new Nats' closer Rafael Sorian--- Wait? Where is Rafael Soriano?:

With a few writers asking that question now, it's likely the Nationals will have a comment on that matter soon...

• "Rafael Soriano not present on morning of Nationals first workout" - Adam Kilgore, Washington Post

• "Nationals Pastime: No sign of Rafael Soriano at Nationals camp" - Dan Kolko,

• "No Soriano as workouts begin" - Mark Zuckerman,

Until then, it's links and lots of them, starting RIGHT NOW!!!:



• "Not long after his season ended in excruciating fashion, Drew Storen watched the tape of the ninth inning of Game 5." - "Drew Storen says he’s moved on from Game 5" - Adam Kilgore, Washington Post

• "Chad Cordero, who spent six seasons with the Expos/Nationals organization and saved 128 games in that time, announced last night on Twitter that he has signed a minor league deal with the Angels." - "Nationals Pastime: Storen learning, growing through his toughest moments" - Dan Kolko,

• "Davey Johnson said that night he thought Storen was trying to nibble too much on the edges of the strike zone instead of trusting his stuff to get batters out." - "Storen re-watches Game 5" - Mark Zuckerman,

• "[Davey] Johnson also said he is happy that [Danny] Espinosa declined to go to the World Baseball Classic because of the injury." - "Nationals confident in Espinosa's shoulder" - Bill Ladson, News

• "An excited yet tired [Denard] Span met with a group of print/Internet reporters this morning before getting in a workout and doing a few on-camera interviews for D.C. TV stations in the afternoon." - "Nationals Pastime: Early reports positive on Espinosa's shoulder" - Dan Kolko,

• "[Denard] Span comes to the Nationals with a reputation as an affable, outgoing player who is easy to get along with." - "Denard Span settles in as a member of the Washington Nationals" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "[Denard] Span is the leadoff hitter the Nationals have been looking to acquire for several years. With him on the roster, it means that Jayson Werth can move to the middle of the order." - "Span early to camp, eager to join new team" - Bill Ladson, News

• "Both [Mike] Rizzo and [Davey] Johnson said today they don't have major concerns about [Danny] Espinosa moving forward." - "Nats letting Espinosa play through shoulder tear" - Mark Zuckerman, CSN Washington

• "Davey [Johnson] hasn’t made a decision on what he wants to do, how many left-handers he wants, all that. There’s going to be a competition..." - Steve McCatty - "The Nationals’ one unsettled group: the bullpen" - James Wagner, Washington Post

• "Nationals manager Davey Johnson said he’s still waiting to hear from Team USA manager Joe Torre or pitching coach Greg Maddux for an exact schedule on how they plan to use Gonzalez in the tournament." - "Nationals notes: Gio Gonzalez braced for unusual spring" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "Truthfully, the state of the Nationals has probably never been better. Davey Johnson said this is the best defensive team he's ever managed, with as good of a starting rotation, bullpen and bench as he's ever had.' - "Rizzo: Nationals ready to take on National League" - Joey Nowak, News

• "[Davey] Johnson's reaction to pitcher Gio Gonzalez's name being linked to a report about performance-enhancing drugs: 'Knowing Gio, I figured there wasn't much to it.'" - "Johnson readies for last season managing Nationals" - AP/

• "'I thought one time I was going to get run over by a bull elephant,' [Davey] Johnson said. 'It was the only time we were within 10 feet of animals in a big Land Rover.'" - "Nationals Pastime: Notes and quotes from Davey Johnson's first media session this spring" - Dan Kolko,

• "Nationals Manager Davey Johnson indicated that Team USA coaches have slated Gonzalez to pitch on March 10, the team’s third game of pool play." - "Nationals adjust Gio Gonzalez’s schedule for World Baseball Classic" - James Wagner, Washington Post

• "At this point, any potential moves likely would be to add depth at Class AAA Syracuse, particularly pitching depth." - "More major acquisitions unlikely" - Mark Zuckerman,

• "Even though [Gio] Gonzalez's name has surfaced in the Miami New Times, it has not intensified the Nationals' search to look for a starting pitcher in case Gonzalez is suspended." - "Johnson stands by Gonzalez after Bosch report" - Bill Ladson, News

• "[Mike] Rizzo seemed to indicate, however, that despite [Gio] Gonzalez's link to Biogenesis, the Nats aren't out there searching for another starter." - "Nationals Pastime: Rizzo: Gonzalez's situation doesn't intensify search for a starter" - Dan Kolko,

• "'He’s 70, huh?' reliever Drew Storen said of the man who’s been wearing a navy blue USA Baseball tracksuit around the complex the past few days..." - "Last year or not, Davey Johnson is ready to go" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "[Davey] Johnson has won six division titles and the one World Series, but he said these Nationals are 'unequivocally' the best defensive team he has managed." - "Davey Johnson, Nationals happy to take on the great expectations of 2013 MLB season" - Adam Kilgore, The Washington Post

• "VIDEO: Haren on joining the Nats" - Mark Zuckerman,

• via Twitter (@NationalsPR):

• "'By no means have we ever talked about any figures, years, nothing like that,' [Ian] Desmond said. '[The Nationals] asked if we were interested. We said possibly. That's pretty much the extent of it.'" - "Desmond in no rush to sign extension" - Bill Ladson, News

• "[Ian] Desmond is coming off a career year, but one that saw him land on the disabled list for the first time since breaking into the big leagues in 2009." - "Nationals Pastime: For Desmond, new training regimen, same baseball mentality" - Dan Kolko,

• "[Ian] Desmond, who went through his first arbitration process this offseason, is signed through the 2015 season and will make $3.8 million in 2013." - "Nationals, Ian Desmond mutually open-minded about a contract extension" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "[Ian] Desmond blossomed into an all-star shortstop last season and pieced together perhaps the best all-around season at his position in the majors last year." - "Ian Desmond, Nationals in no rush to discuss contract extension" - James Wagner, Washington Post

• "[Bryce] Harper, though, didn't have much of a say whether he wound up in left field or right field." - "Harper in LF, Werth in RF" - Mark Zuckerman,

• "[Matt] Lecroy said the best indication that [Anthony] Rendon has a big bat was a monster home run he hit late in the year." - "Lecroy: Rendon made nice strides in Harrisburg to help him prepare for 2013" - Byron Kerr,

• "Asked if he would like to manage in the big leagues, [David] Eckstein said, 'The aspirations to manage are always there.'" - "Eckstein has managerial aspirations" - Bill Ladson, News


• "Going into spring training, there is no urgency within the Nationals' organization to rush out and acquire a starter as a contingency plan..." - "Kyle Lohse running out of time to find a team" - Buster Olney, ESPN [INSIDERS ONLY]

• Audio: Denard Span was on MLB Network Radio this morning:

• "The Nationals hold auditions on March 2 for those who want to play the roles of racing presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt and the newest, William Howard Taft -- better known as George, Tom, Abe, Teddy and Bill." - "Help wanted: Nationals need racing presidents" -

• "Widely criticized for shutting down Stephen Strasburg before the playoffs last year, the Nationals are on a mission to demonstrate it sometimes pays to be patient." - "Spring training: NL East preview" - Phil Rogers, Baseball Wires -

• "Every University of Miami baseball player underwent testing recently for performance-enhancing drugs, including human growth hormone, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press." - "AP: University of Miami tests baseball team for HGH" - AP/USA Today

• "[Chad] Cordero, 30, has not pitched in the big leagues since 2010, when he made nine appearances with the Mariners." - "Chad Cordero will make comeback attempt, signs with Angels" - Mike Axisa,

• "One of the strangest baseball stories of 2012 was the Nationals decision to not use ace pitcher Stephen Strasburg during the post-season because he had already pitched 159 innings." - "Five Questions for the 2013 Baseball Season" - Lincoln Mitchell, Huffington Post


• "Nats new batting practice cap should have been 1967 Senators 'White War' version" - William F. Yurasko, William World News

• "The Nationals hold auditions on March 2 for those who want to play the roles of racing presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt and the newest, William Howard Taft -- better known as George, Tom, Abe, Teddy and Bill." - "Help wanted: Nationals need racing presidents" -

• "Yesterday Gio answered questions from the media, and if you read different accounts you get a different story." - "The Gio cloud" - Harper, Nationals Baseball

• "Ross Detwiler decorated Ryan Zimmerman's locker with Zim-on-safari photoshop pics" - Nats Enquirer

• "The alumni of the Washington Senators, on and off the diamond, just got smaller again. Shelby Whitfield, who broadcasted the Senators with Ron Menchine on radio and television for the 1969 and 1970 seasons died." - "R.I.P. Shelby Whitfield" - William F. Yurasko, William World News

• "Minors Pitching Staff Analysis, Part Three" - Luke Erickson,

• "Senators Birthdays: Timothy Joseph Jordan B Feb. 14, 1879 B Sep. 13, 1949 - Tim Jordan would make his major league debut with the Washington Senators in August of 1910." - "This Date in Washington Senators History" - Art Audley, D.C. Baseball History

• "Why is Toradol 'ok' but Steroids and HGH 'bad?'" - Todd Boss, Nationals Arm Race

• "The last Washington Senators player to hit .300 for a season has died. Chuck Hinton wore #32 from 1961-64 with the expansion Senators and hit .310 in his second season." - "R.I.P. Chuck Hinton, Washington Senators player, Howard University baseball coach" - William F. Yurakso, William World News


Mets: "Though the team has not posted good results during the Sandy Alderson-Terry Collins reign and currently lacks an outfield, most industry folks think Alderson has steered the team in the right direction, with a young nucleus coming together." - "Next step: put money where his mouth is" - Ken Davidoff,

Phillies: "'When I get that opportunity, when they give me that sink or swim opportunity like they did last year at the end of the year, see what I'm capable of for four, five hundred at bats, then if I fail. . .'" - Domonic Brown - "Domonic Brown says he is looking for that 'sink or swim' opportunity" - David Murphy, Phildelphia Daily News

Braves: "Only a few Braves position players weren’t in camp by Wednesday, and manager Fredi Gonzalez noted that two were Central Floridians not assured of roster spots, outfielder Jordan Schafer and infielder Tyler Pastornicky." - "Schafer, Pastornicky not among early arrivers" - David O'Brien,

Marlins: "[John] Maine is not only one of 38 pitchers in camp for the Marlins; he’s not even the only one with the last name "Maine." Scott Maine, no relation, is trying to win a bullpen spot." - "JUPITER: Healthy John Maine on journey to big-league comeback with Miami Marlins" - Clark Spencer,