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Wire Taps: Nationals option Victor Robles to AAA; Where’s Ryan Zimmerman?; SI picks Nats for World Series...

Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news before the start of today’s game with the Astros (1:05 PM on MASN, ESPN 2, MLB.tv).

MLB: Spring Training-Miami Marlins at Washington Nationals Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

With eight days left until Opening Day, five games left in Florida, and zero patience left for Spring Training, things *should* amp up regarding lineups and pitch counts now.

Keyword being should. Here’s what’s popping from the Power Drink-Branded FITTEAM Ballpark of the Palm Beaches.

(Eight days.)

Victor Robles optioned to Triple A
In the long run, it was really the right move. Robles wasn't quite ready for Major League pitching, and with Michael A. Taylor in center and Adam Eaton in left, there was simply nowhere for him to slide in — next season, it should be easier.

SI World Series pick: Nationals over the Yankees
We don't kid: It's the third time since 2013 that the premier magazine in the industry has chosen the Nationals. You would think they've learned their lesson by now.

A.J. Cole will make the Opening Day roster. What’s that mean for the Nationals’ bullpen?
Answer: It means that three lefties, instead of competing for two spots, will now all go after one coveted spot. If he earns the starting job, then another spot opens up — but if Jeremy Hellickson takes over, that's when things really get weird.

Adam Eaton Is the Washington Nationals' X-Factor
Adam Eaton was supposed to take the Nats to the next level next year. After an ACL injury, it didn't exactly happen — but now mostly forgotten by the outside world, Eaton is ready to turn some heads for a while.

Injury Update - Only Zimm edition
Everyone's hearing the same story from Ryan Zimmerman — but some of it certainly seems fishy, especially the part where Zimmerman — not known for his glove at first — has settled for minor league work?

Ryan Zimmerman is healthy. Why haven't we seen him in a month?
Ryan Zimmerman has played one (1) — yes, count 'em, one — Grapefruit League game this year. Is he injured? According to Dave Martinez and Zimmerman himself, it was simply a way out of Spring Training — a drawn out process that he despises — and a way to protect himself from *actually* getting injured.

Erick Fedde eyes spot as Nationals' fifth starter
Erick Fedde's first taste of the big leagues last season wasn't a pretty one — 9.39 ERAs often don't lend themselves to that comparison. But with experience under his belt and a healthy elbow, this season will be different — at least, he thinks so.

Sean Doolittle explains his journey through the seven stages of grief after the UVA-UMBC game
Sean Doolittle, a UVA grad, was anxious at the beginning, concerned in the middle, and, by the final buzzer, had accepted his fate.

One of the Major Offseason Winners Is the ... Phillies? Grading Out the NL East Winter
"You might've expected the Nationals to go all out this offseason... Instead, Washington's front office played it safe."

Today’s Game: Astros vs Nationals
Probable Pitchers: Lance McCullers vs Gio Gonzalez