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Wire Taps: Max Scherzer throws insane bullpen; Seven teams with best Bryce Harper chances; Victor Robles sticks to D.R. roots

Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news as we wait for position players to officially report to Spring Training...

Washington Nationals v Atlanta Braves

So, when does actual baseball start?

What do you mean, 42 days?

Here’s the scoop from South Florida.

Victor Robles, Bryce Harper insurance policy, has stayed close to his roots in the Dominican Republic, and he's just getting started
Jorge Castillo spent some time with Robles in the D.R. this offseason, getting the first full-fledged profile of a player who is looked at as someone that could be a potential MVP in the future. From not getting his first glove until age fifteen to washing cars to pay the money to sign up for baseball, to playing with his hair on fire, to the signing process, to not "letting the gringos stop him," this article is comprehensive and gives you a full picture of the 20-year-old the Nats expect to replace Bryce Harper. [ed. note - “If Harper leaves.”]

Although still in recovery mode, Adam Eaton is aiming to be ready for Opening Day
Eaton will move to left field (less running, Michael A. Taylor stays in center) this season after tearing his ACL, and thinks he'll be more than fine for Opening Day.

When superteams fail: 2015 Nationals
"The Nationals looked like one of the best teams imaginable. The NL East was a foregone conclusion. Bryce Harper seemed poised to win a World Series. What could possibly happen?"

Strasburg says Nationals are underrated
Stephen Strasburg thinks that the Nats are "under the radar." In the most crucial season in franchise history, it's surprising, but it could be useful.

Max Scherzer looks dominant in bullpen session
Time apparently doesn't exist for Max Scherzer (knock on all the wood), who fired on all cylinders on Thursday morning. Also, the Nats have instituted something called the Circle of Trust, which, what?

The 7 teams with the best chance to sign Bryce Harper
According to Heyman, the Nats aren't too optimistic about their odds of retaining Harper. Heyman is unclear as to if the teams listed are ranked, or if they're just in an arbitrary order. But the Dodgers and Giants are at the top.

Brandon Kintzler chose familiarity over chances to close in returning to Nationals
Brandon Kintzler expected a lot more bids for his services, and a lot more money. But when the Nats came knocking, he knew it was the best chance — both fiscally and from a competing standpoint — he would get.

Rob Manfred will introduce pace of play measures next week
MLB will announce rule changes to quicken the pace of play before Spring Training games start next week — but a pitch clock is not included. However, Manfred is willing to act unilaterally.

Scherzer comes out firing on all cylinders
"Long after the other pitchers in his group were finished, Max Scherzer was the only one left on a bullpen mound, still firing away and working hard on specific game situations."

Max Scherzer needs to finish as dominant as he started
Max Scherzer was in midseason form in his first bullpen, firing sixty intense pitches. It's unlike anything that any of his teammates or peers did — but starting strong has never been the problem for Scherzer. Instead, he needs to find a way to succeed in the postseason.

Tim Lincecum shows flashes of old self at workout — is he a fit for the Nats?
At least ten teams attended Lincecum's workout, and the Nats could use a fifth starter, but is Lincecum too washed up to fit the bill?

Former Nats: den Dekker returns to New York
den Dekker spent his time in Detroit after a two-ish year stint with Washington.

O'Dowd bullish on Nats, opportunity to re-sign Harper
"I believe they are going to get over the hump this year. They [gotta] have health... If they have health at the right time, then this is a club that should be competing in the World Series this year."