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“Lack of velocity, again, but he was able to locate his pitches well” Acta said. “He still says he doesn’t feel anything wrong with his arm, so I’m assuming he’s fine.”

But Cordero’s progression toward the closer’s role was a moot point last night in a game where it was clear early the Nationals wouldn’t need one.

“The way our offense is going, not being able to score runs consistently, I think all our pitchers might be pressing,” Estrada said. “You can’t do that. We don’t have the guys in our rotation to try to go out there and pitch shutouts.”


Wily Mo Pena’s World Series ring arrived yesterday from the Boston Red Sox, where he spent the first half of the 2007 season, and it didn’t take long for the 2.33-carat ring to become the centerpiece of the Nationals’ locker room.

Pena was invited to the Red Sox’s home opener to receive his ring in person, but he was rehabbing his torn left oblique muscle in Florida.

“I hope we can get one here pretty quick,” Pena said.

The left fielder said he would wear the ring “for a little bit, just to show it around.” After that, he’ll put the ring, valued around $10,000, in a safe place.

Ben Goessling


14 Combined runs Matt Chico has given up in the first two innings of his six starts this season.


Nationals LHP John Lannan Record, ERA: 1-2, 3.42

Cubs LHP Ted Lilly Record, ERA: 1-3, 7.30

Time: 1:35 p.m. TV: MASN