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As a result, the Nationals are left trying to play the matchups.

Pitching coach Steve McCatty cautions that it’s not always a bad thing to remember what guys have done outside of the six weeks they spend in Florida each year. Burnett struggled throughout spring training in 2010, allowing 11 earned runs in just eight innings, a performance he called “embarrassing at times.” He put up a 2.14 ERA during the regular season and allowed just 15 earned runs in 63 innings of work.

“It still could be any of those guys,” McCatty said. “Remember, last year when we had [Matt] Capps? He didn’t have a good spring either.”