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Wire Taps: Nationals’ closer Sean Doolittle looks at slider; Daniel Murphy unsure about Opening Day; Bryce Harper/Don Mattingly beef

The last 24 hours in Nationals news, all in one place for your convenience. Start catching up... RIGHT NOW!

MLB: NLDS-Chicago Cubs at Washington Nationals Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

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First game is this Friday, “at” Houston.

Here’s what’s featured at the FITTEAM (R) Ballpark of the Palm Beaches:

Boswell: Whatever Bryce Harper decides, the Washington Nationals played this right
The Nats have seen their fair share of homegrown players hit the market. They have made contingency plans in case they do. They have made every effort to keep them at home. They have made sure nobody gets hurt. This organization may have some flaws, but in terms of doing the right thing with their guys, nobody does it better.

Sean Doolittle wants to take another look at his slider
In 2014, he used the pitch 11.3% of the time. In 2017, it was just 5.2% of the time — but he thinks that if he gets it right (a big if, given health concerns and finding the right grip), he can make himself a more complete pitcher. (Also: Adam Eaton is participating in everything!)

Nationals' Daniel Murphy makes rehab progress
"It has been difficult for Murphy to spend the past few months not being able to hit, limited as he recovers from the debridement and microfracture surgery he underwent on his right knee."

Bryce Harper doesn’t understand why so many great free agents haven’t been signed
'There’s a guy like Jake Arrieta out there right now. I’d put him on my staff any day of the week,' the Nationals slugger said while discussing this year's tepid free agency market.

Washington Nationals' Sean Doolittle avoided Metro for weeks after teenager said he resembled Seth Rogen
Sean Doolittle got made fun of on the Metro. Then he didn't ride it for a solid period of time. Relatable, honestly.

Don Mattingly to Bryce Harper: ‘Take care of your business and we’ll take care of ours’
The Marlins manager didn't appreciate Harper's comments about his team's cost-cutting moves.

Bryce Harper Forced Don Mattingly Into Clowning Himself
Of course Don Mattingly agreed with Bryce Harper's comments. Of course he couldn't say anything of the sort. Thus: He clowned himself.

Victor Robles tops all-homegrown top 30 prospect list
Robles one, Juan Soto two, Carter Kieboom three, Erick Fedde four, Seth Romero five. A great day for Yasel Antuna, also!

All Daniel Murphy can do these days is dream about hitting
Murphy won't commit to playing Opening Day, because he wants to be back for good once he's back — but the timetable means he could be cleared as soon as today, and as late as April 20th. In other news, Murphy falls asleep with at-bats in his mind.

MLB teams to wear Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School caps for Spring Training opener
Every cap will be signed, auctioned off, and the money will then go to the victims' foundation. It started with a few Grapefruit League teams, and then it spread to every team in the league.

Mattingly says Harper off base to critique Marlins' moves
"Take care of your own dugout," the Marlins' skipper told Bryce.

No matter what happens in 2018, Bryce Harper and Stephen Strasburg changed D.C. baseball forever
Harper and Strasburg first took the field together in 2012. Now, with one last guaranteed season together, it's time for them to complete the chain they started in 2010, and put an exclamation point on their tenure together with a World Series ring.

Murphy eyes Opening Day return but knows odds aren't in his favor
Sometime in the NLDS, Daniel Murphy felt a twinge, or something. Flash forward to a microfracture surgery and a long rehab process, and the Nats may be starting Howie Kendrick on Opening Day.

Bryce Harper will not be able to escape his free-agency. Just ask Kirk Cousins.
Harper wants to keep things quiet. So did Kirk Cousins — and he didn't. And he wasn't worth a $500 million price tag, which is a tag that doesn't have that much quietness associated with it. And to demand $500 million, anything less than perfection will cause a problem.

Bryce Harper has Marlins beef with Don Mattingly
Bryce criticized Miami for initiating its third rebuild despite having a completely legitimate, usable core.

Someone did an analysis of what Racing President won when the Nats won
It was George, and there was a LOT of analysis.