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Gone for the Nationals’ pitchers is the fear that Reyes or Bonifacio will run wild on them if they get on base. Gone for the Nationals’ hitters is the intimidation factor of knowing they’d have to face Johnson and Buehrle in a three- or four-game series.

Otherwise, the National League East champions took the move in stride, if wide-eyed at the extremity of it.

“I’m not worried about what’s going on there,” Johnson said. “I only worry about what we do.”

“On paper it’s going to change a bunch,” Mattheus added. “But we’re going to have to play the games to actually see the way it plays out.”