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Wire Taps: Nationals’ closer Sean Doolittle struggles; Role for Wilmer Difo; Nats’ prospect updates...

Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news before the start of today’s Grapefruit League game against the Mets...

MLB: Spring Training-St. Louis Cardinals at Washington Nationals Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Sean Doolittle wasn’t particularly sharp on Saturday, and he tired towards the end of the rough outing against the Cardinals. I wouldn’t worry just yet, however. Also, new reliever Trevor Rosenthal hit 102 on MASN’s probably hot radar.

What will Wilmer Difo be asked to do in 2019? All this and more in today’s links. Go read your (MASN-filled) links...


Doolittle gets a much-needed "wakeup call" with blown save - (MASN)
"It didn’t help today, though, because a physically taxed Doolittle looked nothing like his usual self as the inning unraveled."

Versatile Difo gets call to start in center field (Nats fall 8-5) - (MASN)
"[Wilmer] Difo has played in 248 games at infield positions for the Nats over the past four seasons, but only seven games in the outfield. That doesn’t faze Martinez..."

Nationals see Wilmer Difo as a ‘super utility’ player. Injuries could make that a critical role - (WaPost)
"He likes center more than the corners in the outfield, and that’s good because he started there against the St. Louis Cardinals in a Grapefruit League game Saturday."

Teenager Luis Garcia adding strength and defensive skill to hitting prowess - (MASN)
“'His bat-to-ball instincts are off the charts,' [Mark] Scialabba said. 'He is someone who has a knack for hitting and makes adjustments.'"

Teenager Mason Denaburg ready for live baseball with Nats - (MASN)
"Right-hander Mason Denaburg, the Nationals’ 2018 first-round pick in the First-Year Player Draft, is making very good progress in his first spring training."

Braves GM's faith in Sánchez ultimately lands pitcher in D.C. - (MASN)
"Alex Anthopoulos first fell in love with Aníbal Sánchez in December 2012, when the then-Blue Jays general manager flew to Miami to court the then-free agent pitcher."


Washington Nationals news, rumors, and 2019 fantasy MLB baseball preview - (Yahoo!Sports)
"The emergence of Juan Soto last season makes [Bryce] Harper’s decision to leave much easier to digest."

Franks added to Grizzlies ownership - (Madera Tribune)
"Fresno Sports and Events LLC, the operator of Fresno Grizzlies Baseball (Triple-A Pacific Coast League, Washington Nationals), has announced Team President Derek Franks has been added to the franchise’s ownership group."

These 9 spring stat lines shouldn't be ignored - (
"The steals were expected from [Victor] Robles, but this kind of power? That’s the all-around game that makes him MLB’s No. 4 prospect."