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Wire Taps: Washington Nationals get strong starts from Erick Fedde & Joe Ross; Kyle Schwarber leadoff bomber; + more Nats links

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Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news while you wait for the start of the series with the Bucs...

MLB: San Francisco Giants at Washington Nationals Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

While Max Scherzer was out after just 12 pitches on Friday, with Stephen Strasburg back on the IL, Erick Fedde and Joe Ross came through in a big way for Washington over the course of their four-game set with the San Francisco Giants in Nationals Park. Fedde gave the Nats five scoreless in their win on Saturday, and Ross tossed eight scoreless in Sunday’s finale in the nation’s capital. How important were the two starters for the Nationals?

“They picked us up, big time,” Davey Martinez said after Sunday’s win.

“Huge for both of those guys. They saved our bullpen, like I said before, our bullpen has been used quite a bit, they’ve come up with some big innings for us, and big games for us, so that’s very important moving forward, we have no days off till Thursday, so it was nice to give that bullpen a rest, and now we’re strong going into the Pittsburgh series.”

Go read your links...

NATS BEAT:

Kyle Schwarber's homers back Joe Ross in Nationals' shutout over Giants - (Washington Times)
"Midway through his swing, though, he realized how high that high fastball really was."

Kyle Schwarber's switch to leadoff helped Nationals split series with Giants - (NBC Sports Washington)
"The Nationals capped off a back-and-forth, three-day, four-game series with a 5-0 victory over the San Francisco Giants on Sunday."

Kyle Schwarber, Joe Ross lift Nationals past Giants - (WaPost)
"Schwarber homered in the first two innings and Ross turned in eight scoreless for a 5-0 win over the National League-leading Giants."

Ross completes eight innings as Nats shut out Giants - (MASN)
"Ross’ 108-pitch gem today arguably was the best of his career."

Kyle Schwarber, Joe Ross lead Nationals in shutout of Giants - (MLB.com)
"Manager Dave Martinez had a feeling Kyle Schwarber could thrive batting leadoff in the Nationals' lineup."

Max Scherzer throwing again after leaving game Friday - (Washington Times)
"As one starting pitcher took steps toward a quick return Sunday, another was stuck in a holding pattern."

Scherzer hopes to avoid IL, but admits it may be needed - (MASN)
"Scherzer hurt himself in the top of the first Friday night, feeling a twinge on his 12th pitch of the game."

Max Scherzer still hoping to make next start - (WaPost)
"Nationals ace Max Scherzer, who left his start Friday night after feeling tightness in his groin, will try to throw a bullpen Monday and decide what's next then."

NATIONAL(S) BEAT:

Cade Cavalli fans 15 in 7 no-hit frames - (MLB.com)
"Cade Cavalli is pitching like he feels right at home with the Blue Rocks, but at this rate he may be needing to pack his bags sooner than later."

Cade Cavalli developing into Nationals’ best pitching prospect since Lucas Giolito - (NBC Sports Washington)
"Right-hander Cade Cavalli, the Nationals’ first-round pick out of Oklahoma last June, has posted a 1.77 ERA in seven starts for High-A Wilmington this season following a 15-strikeout performance Sunday that saw him allow no hits over seven scoreless innings."

NL EAST UPDATES:

Paul O'Neill Forgets A Guy - (Defector)
"The trivia question that accompanied the New York broadcast of Phillies-Yankees on Saturday wasn’t easy, and it stumped the announcers, Michael Kay and Paul O’Neill."

Dellin Betances starts rehab assignment - (MLB.com(
"Mets officials will be watching closely to see if Betances’ fastball velocity, which hovered in the low 90s during Spring Training and in early April, can boost back into the mid 90s."

Marlins’ Corey Dickerson is allergic to runners in scoring position - (Fish Stripes)
"Could this Professional Hitter™️ be on the verge of a turnaround?"

Abraham Almonte is the Braves’ cleanup hitter - (AJC.com)
"You wouldn’t have expected this when the season began: Abraham Almonte as the Braves’ cleanup hitter."