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  • Healthy Morse excited about joining Giants

    Mike Morse is healthy again, and he thinks he's ready to return to the form that made him one of the top hitters in the National League in 2011.

  • Washington Nationals left fielder Mark DeRosa (7), left, and Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34), center, celebrate with their teammates as the Washington Nationals clinch the National League East at Nationals Park, sending them into the playoffs, Washington, D.C., Monday, October 1, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

    Mark DeRosa signs with Blue Jays

    Mark DeRosa has agreed to a $775,000, one-year contract with Toronto, giving the Blue Jays more infield and outfield depth as they try for their first playoff berth since 1993.

  • Washington Nationals, Adam LaRoche, Mark DeRosa, Ryan Zimmerman and General Manager Mike Rizzo, present gifts to Chipper Jone, Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2012, in Washington, DC. Jones said he would be retiring after this session. He has played his entire 19 year career was an Atlanta Brave, winning one World Series title with them in 1995. (Craig Bisacre/The Washington Times)

    Nationals give their salute to Chipper Jones

    Mark DeRosa was 23 when he first experienced life with Chipper Jones. A 1998 September call-up for the Atlanta Braves, DeRosa was in the dugout watching as the Braves' third baseman tapped a 3-2 change-up back to the pitcher in his first at-bat one night.

  • Everything is new for Washington catcher Kurt Suzuki, particularly the pitchers (shown with Ross Detwiler). (Associated Press)

    New Nationals catcher Suzuki, family adjust to being relocated across the country

    Renee Suzuki wasn't looking at her phone. Gone to the grocery store, she left her husband, Kurt, and their 15-month-old daughter, Malia, in their East Bay home. She'd put the phone away for mere minutes. When she checked, her heart jumped. Seven missed calls from Kurt.

  • **FILE** Milwaukee Brewers shortstop Cesar Izturis fields a line drive hit by Philadelphia Phillies' Jimmy Rollins to end the second inning of the Phillies' 7-6 home win on July 23, 2012. (Associated Press)

    Shortstop Cesar Izturis claimed off waivers by Nationals

    The Nationals shored up their middle-infield depth Monday, acquiring Cesar Izturis on a waiver claim from the Milwaukee Brewers. Mark DeRosa was placed on the disabled list with a left abdominal strain, making the move for Izturis not only timely but necessary.

  • Washington Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman (11) and right fielder Bryce Harper (34) celebrate after the Nationals defeated the New York Mets 8-2 in ten innings in their baseball game at Citi Field in New York, Monday, July 23, 2012. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

    SNYDER: Nationals relax as other teams buy and sell

    The Washington Nationals didn't make any moves at Tuesday's trading deadline, which means at least two things: General manager Mike Rizzo likes the makeup of his team, and Edwin Jackson is staying put for just the second time in seven years.

  • Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg throws during the first inning of a baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles in Washington, Sunday, May 20, 2012. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

    Nationals have blueprint for Series title

    It seemed only fitting that San Francisco starting pitcher Tim Lincecum ended the Giants' 2010 season by allowing just three hits and striking out 10 in their World Series win against the Texas Rangers. After all, it was precision from the mound that brought the crown to the City by the Bay in the first place.

  • Washington Nationals third base coach Bo Porter congratulates Xavier Nady after he hit a home run during the eighth inning against the Cincinnati Reds on Friday, April 13, 2012, in Washington. The Nationals won 2-1 in 13 innings. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

    Sluggish starts vex Nationals OFs Xavier Nady, Mark DeRosa

    Xavier Nady stood in front of his locker Wednesday afternoon slowly swinging his bat back and forth by his feet. It was a month to the day since he signed a minor league deal with the Washington Nationals, role unknown. He'd be lying if he thought an opportunity to be the team's starting left fielder would be presenting itself.

  • Nationals utility man Mark Derosa played in only 47 games last season due to a wrist injury, hitting .279 with no home runs and 12 RBI. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

    Nationals' Mark DeRosa looks forward to Opening Day in park where he blossomed

    The words were so sweet that Mark DeRosa still remembers the moment he first heard them. It was early November in 2006, and DeRosa was in his car when his agent, Keith Grunewald, called to give him news that brings a smile to his face even more than five years later.

  • Utility infielder Brett Carroll has a good chance to make the Washington Nationals' 25-man roster after the team cut four players Thursday. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

    Brett Carroll close to securing spot on Nationals' roster

    In the morning, Washington Nationals outfielder Brett Carroll watched as the man who'd been his primary competition for a spot on the team's bench all spring quietly packed up his belongings. In the afternoon, Carroll all but solidified his place on the roster.

  • Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) warms up as he gets ready to bat as the Washington Nationals play the Georgetown Hoyas during a spring training exhibition game at Space Coast Stadium, Viera, Fla., Friday, March 2, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

    Bryce Harper is doing all the right things as he tracks toward the majors

    Most mornings, Bryce Harper sits at his locker inside the Washington Nationals' clubhouse and chats quietly with Jason Michaels.

  • Nationals relief pitcher Sean Burnett plays catch with his son Sebastian, 3, on Thursday at Space Coast Stadium in Viera, Fla.andrew harnik/the washington times (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)
Manager Davey Johnson (center) would rather the Nationals win their division than worry about getting into the playoffs as a wild card. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

    Adding a wild card is 'going to help us,' but caution abounds for Nationals

    A warm breeze swirled through Space Coast Stadium, past the osprey nest perched atop the right-field light pole, the youngster scrubbing the dugout roof with a rag and the rhythmic crack of bat on ball.

  • Sports Briefs

    The Washington Nationals announced the signing of utilityman Mark DeRosa to a one-year contract Wednesday morning, adding depth to their bench for the 2012 season.

  • Nationals nearing a deal with utility player Mark DeRosa

    The Washington Nationals continued their efforts to restock their bench, closing in on a deal with utility man Mark DeRosa late Wednesday night, according to a source with knowledge of the negotiations.

  • What free agents could be the best matches for the Nationals?

    Here it is: the final weekend before baseball's winter meetings begin Monday in Dallas. It's been more than a month without any baseball and it'll be just over two more before the Washington Nationals pack up and head down to Viera, Fla. to start the 2012 season anew.

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