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Wire Taps: Nationals prepare for 2015 MLB Draft; Danny Espinosa plays left = heads explode

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The Washington Nationals have the 58th pick tonight, so prepare for 3-4 hours of prospects getting picked before the Nats do something. And forget about mock draft fun, because so few go up to 58... but like totally fun, yeah. Here are some links....

Mike Stobe/Getty Images

While the Washington Nationals have the day off before the start of the two-game set with the New York Yankees in NY tomorrow night, the Nats' front office will be hard at work today preparing for the start of the 2015 MLB Draft.

Though they have to wait for the 58th pick before making their first selection, having surrendered their top pick when they signed free agent right-hander Max Scherzer this winter, Nationals' GM Mike Rizzo told reporters this weekend that they would take the same approach they always have.

"It’s just something that’s a little more boring because you don’t have the excitement of pick one or pick six or pick 29, but it’s still to me the Super Bowl of the season..." -Mike Rizzo on Nationals' approach to 2015 Draft

"It’s just something that’s a little more boring because you don’t have the excitement of pick one or pick six or pick 29," Rizzo told reporters this weekend, "but it’s still to me the Super Bowl of the season and we will be fired up for it Monday and we’re going to have a few long sleepless nights for the next couple of days to tweak the board and get it in the order we want it. When Monday comes, when the horn rings, we’ll be ready."

The horn won't ring for a few hours now. Things get started at 7:00 PM EDT, then 57 picks will have to be made before it's the Nationals' turn. We can wait. What will the Nats do? If you can make a prediction on the 58th pick, we'd love to hear it. Until then, links and lots of them to catch you up on the last 24 hours of Nationals news... starting... RIGHT NOW!:

NATS BEAT: Draft talk; Espi in left obsession; Cubs vs Nats

2015 MLB Draft:

• "Because they have no first-round pick, the Nationals have significantly less bonus money to spread among their picks than other teams in the league." - "MLB draft preview: With no first-round pick, Nats will wait on impact talent" - Chelsea Janes, The Washington Post

• "Once he joins the Nationals, Turner could start with Double-A Harrisburg while ending the season with Triple-A Syracuse." - "Nats could get Turner from Padres as soon as June 14" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com

• "'Why am I defending him when I don’t feel like I should have to?' McCatty said. 'He hasn’t done anything wrong.'" - "Five years after ‘Strasmas,’ Nationals’ star pitcher confounds" - Adam Kilgore, The Washington Post

• "The Nationals, who won't make their first pick until the second round, don't have sluggers who are on the rise in their farm system." - "Nats ready to focus on position players in Draft" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com

Espi in left + Span:

• "Span said the back spasms came upon him quickly and jolted him in the dugout after his at bat in the bottom of the seventh." - "Span leaves with back spasms, Espinosa plays left field for first time in loss to Cubs" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

• "'I'm comfortable. I'm trying to get the job done and not overthink it,' Espinosa said." - "Span's back spasms put Espinosa in outfield" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com

• "So Manager Matt Williams moved Michael A. Taylor from left to center and inserted infielder Danny Espinosa in left field for the first time in his professional career." - "Denard Span left Sunday’s game with back spasms so Danny Espinosa played left field" - James Wagner, The Washington Post

• "Span and the Nationals believe this particular injury is minor, but are exercising caution. Span has never dealt with back spasms before in his career." - "Span leaves Nats’ loss with injury, hopes it isn’t serious" - Chase Hughes, Nats Insider

• "One thing to watch for postgame is the status of Denard Span. He left after the seventh inning and was replaced in the outfield by Danny Espinosa." - "Cubs 6, Nats 3: Zimmermann struggles as Nats fall to Cubs" - Chase Hughes, Nats Insider

COLUMNS: Boswell on rough patch; Loverro on Joe Ross

• "Jayson Werth, who has two small hairline fractures in his wrist, is feeling less pain and walked around the clubhouse without a brace on his left wrist." - "Nationals must ride out latest rough patch in up-and-down season" - Thomas Boswell, The Washington Post

• "Did you like what you saw Saturday on the mound from 22-year-old Joe Ross at Nationals Park?" - "Joe Ross the latest glimpse to Nationals' pipeline" - Thom Loverro, Washington Times

Rest of the Nats beat:

• "Nationals right-hander Doug Fister completed his first rehab game with Syracuse Sunday afternoon." - "Fister finishes first rehab game in Syracuse" - Daniel Shiferaw, Nats Insider

• "Solis didn't pitch well, going one inning and allowing three runs on five hits in a 5-2 loss to Trenton." - "Fister, Solis get through first rehab outings" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com

• "Zimmerman is struggling these days, and has been for most of the season. He is a .282 career hitter hitting .213..." - "Ryan Zimmerman gets a day off, won’t panic about struggles at the plate" - Chelsea Janes, The Washington Post

• "Zimmermann struggled from the start and gave up four runs over five innings with 12 Cubs batters having reached base on 10 hits and two walks." - "Zimmermann, Treinen find trouble in Nats’ loss to Cubs" - Chase Hughes, Nats Insider

• "Zimmermann only made it five innings today, allowing four runs on 10 hits with two walks and three strikeouts. He threw 92 pitches." - "Nationals Pastime: Cubs pound 10 hits off Zimmermann, Nats lose 6-3" - Chris Johnson, MASNSports.com

• "Zimmermann allowed a season-high 10 hits, and the four earned runs he gave up were the most since that start in Boston on April 13." - "Jordan Zimmermann has worst start since April as Nationals fall to Cubs" - Chelsea Janes, The Washington Post

• "The Cubs banged 10 of their 14 hits against Jordan Zimmermann, who allowed four runs in five innings." - "Nationals Pastime: Inconsistency leads to third straight series loss" - Chris Johnson, MASNSports.com

NATIONAL(S) BEAT: Yankees next; Cubs talk

• "Bryant, the much-talked-about top prospect for the Cubs, responded to a strikeout in the first inning by reaching safely in his next four at-bats." - "Bryant adjusts to notch three hits vs. Nats" - Jacob Emert, cubs.com

• "'It just validates,' manager Joe Maddon said. 'I’ve been saying all along: I know we can play with the big boys in this league. But you got to prove it.'" - "Cubs send message in DC: ‘We can play with the big boys'" - Patrick Mooney, CSN Chicago

• "Tanaka -- coming off a start in Seattle that saw him tally a season-high nine strikeouts -- will face Max Scherzer when the Nationals travel to New York for a two-game series that begins Tuesday." - "Feeling great, Tanaka to oppose Nats' Scherzer" - Grace Raynor, MLB.com

• "With the blessing of Padres manager Bud Black to make the trip, Ross woke up at 4 a.m. ET on Saturday, taking a 6 a.m. flight to Washington, D.C." - "Attending brother's debut 'incredible' for Ross" - Corey Brock, padres.com

• "Hammel improved his record to 5-2 on the season with the win and lowered his ERA to 2.76. His ERA over his previous five starts is 1.74." - "Hammel continues mastery of Nationals" - Jacob Emert, cubs.com

• "It was one of the better days of the season at the plate for the Cubs. They managed 14 hits but not one left the park." - "Rapid Reaction: Chicago Cubs 6, Washington Nationals 3" - Jesse Rogers, Chicago Cubs Blog - ESPN

• "Completing a season-series victory over the defending National League East champion Nationals validated the Cubs' belief that they can play with the elite teams." - "Cubs take season series from Nationals; Javier Baez has broken finger" - Mark Gonzales, Chicago Tribune

• "The Tigers have four picks in the top 99, including the 22nd overall pick and 34th overall pick, which was compensation for losing Max Scherzer in free agency to the Washington Nationals." - "Detroit Tigers front office lines up selections for MLB draft" - George Sipple, Detroit Free Press

• "Not all the top young sluggers are from Las Vegas. It just feels that way with Gallo, Harper with the Washington Nationals and Bryant with the Chicago Cubs." - "From majors to youth baseball, Las Vegas making an impact" - Mark Anderson, Las Vegas Review-Journal

• "Taylor Jordan: Former Merritt Island High pitcher was reassigned back to the minors (Syracuse) after his second loss in a row with the Washington Nationals." - "Tracking Brevard’s sports stars: Horschel has a big week" - Hillard Grossman, Florida Today

NATS MINORS: Fister's rehab start; Giolito start; Solis with Senators

• Hagerstown 1 vs. Greensboro 4, Jefry Rodriguez - 4.0 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 2 Ks - Hagerstown Suns Box

• "Giolito finished after six innings allowing 11 hits and six runs (five earned). He didn't walk a batter and did strike out eight in his fourth loss of the season." - "Potomac Nationals @ Salem Red Sox Game Recap June 7th, 2015" - Potomac Nationals News

• "Harrisburg 2 vs. Trenton 5, Sammy Solis, 1.0 IP, 5 H, 3 R" - Harrisburg Senators Box

• "Doug Fister gave up two runs in three and two-thirds in his rehab start for Syracuse. Jason Martinson hit his team-leading seventh home run in the loss on Sunday." - "Jason Martinson, Doug Fister and the Syracuse Chiefs dropped the second game of a two-game set with the Pawtucket Red Sox on Sunday afternoon" - Syracuse Chiefs News

• "Manny Delcarmen's long comeback attempt with the Syracuse Chiefs is over." - "Syracuse Chiefs release struggling reliever" - LIndsay Kramer, syracuse.com

• "When asked if he'll be ready to start a major league game in five days, Fister kept the options open." - "Doug Fister returns to Washington Nationals, but another rehab start possible" - Lindsay Kramer, syracuse.com

NL EAST UPDATES: Wood's ejection; Phils' draft like Mets/Nats

Mets: "Fourteen months after undergoing Tommy John surgery, Bobby Parnell is on the verge of rejoining the Mets." - "The biggest concern of Bobby Parnell’s likely return this week" - Mike Puma, New York Post

Phillies: "To their credit, the Nationals did not mess up all those opportunities to make those high picks, although some years it would have been almost impossible to do so." - "Nats, Mets rebuilt through draft; can Phils do same?" - Bob Brookover, Philadelphia Dail News

Braves: "Braves left-hander Alex Wood admitted he allowed his emotions to get the best of him before he was ejected during the decisive fifth inning..." - "Wood ejected in fifth inning against Pirates" - Carlos Collazo, braves.com

Marlins: "It was just Hechavarria's ninth career home run and first since April 25. Entering the 10th, the Marlins shortstop was averaging only one long ball every 175 at-bats." - "Hechavarria sneaks up on Rockies" - Dargan Southard, marlins.com