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Wire Taps: Nationals confident Spring Training facility will be ready on time; Nats' to-do list

Catch up on the latest Nationals news if you've been enjoying the holidays and are out of the loop...

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Happy New Year! To celebrate, here are the first Wire Taps of 2017.

Nats are open to extending Dusty Baker's contract past 2017
Dusty Baker, widely regarded as a success in Washington, only has one year left on his original two-year contract he signed with the team in 2015 -- but the Nats are open to extending his contract past this upcoming season.

Nats, Astros remain confident that new Spring Training facility will be ready on time
The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches still looks quite unfinished, but people who are familiar with the progress of the facility think it will be finished (well, finished enough) on time for the first game on February 28th.

Nats announce Spring Training report dates
The Nats will report to spring training a little early this year due to the World Baseball Classic. Pitchers and catchers will report on February 14th, and position players will report on February 17th.

Daniel Murphy slated to play for USA in World Baseball Classic
Murphy will join Max Scherzer in playing for the U.S. team this March in the World Baseball Classic.

What's left on the Nats' to-do list?
The Nats still need a few things before they're ready to take on the 2017 season (a closer sure wouldn't hurt).

Joe Ross really needs a second pitch
Joe Ross' sinker has declined in value and was easier to hit last season -- which means he either needs to make some changes, or get another pitch to help supplement his slider.

MASN broadcasters Bob Carpenter and F.P. Santangelo will both return
The two are expected to sign multi-year deals this winter to keep them on board for another few years as MASN's Nationals broadcast team.

The Nats should sign Trevor Plouffe
Trevor Plouffe's injury-riddled season in 2016 doesn't mean the first baseman couldn't be a great bench player and reserve for the Nationals in 2017.

Days left until pitchers and catchers report: 39