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Wire Taps: Ryan Madson better than ever; Ryan Zimmerman eases in; Sammy Solis wants late-innings job…

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Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news since you can’t watch or listen to today’s Grapefruit League action...

MLB: NLDS-Chicago Cubs at Washington Nationals Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Thursday, March 8th, 2018. Fewer than three weeks until Opening Day. Almost. There.

Here’s the scoop from the FITTEAM.

(21 days until Opening Day)

Mike Rizzo buys new house in Navy Yard despite lack of extension
Mike Rizzo made a $1.3 million investment in the area and in a home near the stadium. Now, it's time for the Nats to keep him there.

If the Nats are to survive beyond Bryce Harper, Anthony Rendon will be the key
The Nationals have two of the best young players in the game in Rendon and Harper. If they can't hang on to Harper, then you had better believe they need to hang on to Tony Two Bags, who certainly won't find a way to draw as much attention to his free-agency as Bryce Harper has thus far.

Rizzo: "No player is bigger than the organization."
Mike Rizzo downplayed the issue, but he made his voice loud and clear: if you want a place on this team, grow up.

At 37, Ryan Madson is pitching maybe better than ever, and his trainer thinks he can go to 50
Doctors Hate Him! 37-Year-Old Unlocks Secret To Permanent Athletic Longevity! (He also doesn't participate in the group stretching, because he needs to use his electrical current stretching.)

The Nationals' Chris Smith climbed a ladder of broken promises to reach the majors
Chris Smith has been fighting against the odds his whole career, from a D2 school in Kentucky, to indy ball, to a Yankees minor league team, somehow to the Blue Jays, somehow to the majors, and right into the lap of the Nats.

Versatile Matt Reynolds settling in with Nats
Matt Reynolds was once the shortstop of the future in Queens — before becoming the "literally anywhere but first base-"man of the future in Queens. Since entering the Nats organization, he's been hanging out all over.

Ryan Zimmerman easing into spring game action
The Nats are easing Zimmerman in — there are no injury concerns, but this early on, the team sees no value in rushing a guy who can get off the bus and hit a double.

After losing feeling in his hand last season, Sammy Solis is ready to pitch for late-inning duties
Sammy Solis is healthy heading into camp this year, but if something goes wrong, the Nats don't have much room for error with him, as he's completely out of options.

Bryan Harper looking to join brother Bryce on Nats’ roster
Everyone with the last name Harper is wearing red Nats uniforms in the 30s.

Nationals extend play-by-play partnership with 106.7 The Fan through 2022
The station also announced that Dan Kolko will host a weekly “Nats Insider” show on Saturdays.

These are the top NL fantasy baseball sleepers in 2018
"[Michael Taylor has] legitimate 20-20 potential... at pick Nos. 235 through 240.

If they don't lower their demands, the Nats should let both Harper and Murphy walk
Bryce Harper will definitely command more than $300 million. Murphy may have a more short-term outlook, but still could put his own asking price at $20 million. With Wilmer Difo, Carter Kieboom, and Victor Robles in waiting — and a need to rebuild the pitching core coming up in the future — why bother wasting the money on two guys that haven't gotten the Nats past the NLDS?

Rooting for a sports team doesn’t build character. It reveals it.
Fans who consider second place the first loser demonstrate more about themselves than the close-but-not-quite athletes they deride.

Today’s Game: Mets vs Nationals — 1:05 PM
Probable Pitchers: Noah Syndergaard vs Stephen Strasburg