The Washington Times - March 24, 2013, 01:57PM

VIERA, Fla. — The Colorado Rockies returned Rule 5 pick Danny Rosenbaum to the Washington Nationals on Sunday, according to a source with knowledge of the move, closing the book on the Rule 5 players taken from them this past December in the major league portion of the draft.

Rosenbaum, who was in contention for a roster spot in Colorado but seems to have been edged out by the Rockies’ impending signing of Jon Garland (according to multiple reports), pitched in six games for the Rockies this spring.

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He allowed four earned runs on nine hits and three walks. 

The 25-year-old left-hander was well thought of by the Nationals, particularly after a 2011 season in which he had a 2.52 ERA between Single-A Potomac and Double-A Harrisburg. In 2012, Rosenbaum posted a 3.94 mark during a full season at Double-A.

A command pitcher, Rosenbaum had a 2.54 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 2012 with Harrisburg, but in eight spring innings with the Rockies, he did not strike out a single batter.

The Nationals will be happy to accept him back, though, just as they were happy to get infielder Jeff Kobernus back from the Tigers on Saturday. Both players could go to either Double-A Harrisburg or Triple-A Syracuse to open the 2013 season.

Rosenbaum, in particular, could become extremely valuable to the Nationals if he goes to Triple-A and performs well.

With the Nationals thin at their starting pitching insurance for the major league rotation, pending the decision of Chris Young to opt-in or out of his minor league contract with the team, Rosenbaum could find himself in contention for a major league opportunity if he pitches well and an injury arises.