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Nationals make more cuts

The Nationals sent to their minor league first baseman Chris Duncan, starting pitcher Shairon Martis and infielder Pete Orr. All three players will begin the year with Class AAA Syracuse. The Nationals now have 36 players in their major league camp.

"We're just trying to get the club down to a more workable, managebale number as we get to these last couple weeks," Mananger Jim Riggleman said.

Duncan went 5 for 32 (.156) with 10 strikeouts and five walks this his spring in his attempt to revitalize a career beset by injury and a swing gone haywire. In trying to regain the mechanics that made him a burgeoning young slugger with the Cardinals, Duncan may have sacrificed proudction.

"The changes he's trying to make are necessary for his future," Riggleman said. "It may have cost him some quality in some of his at-bats. Somewhere between what he's been working on and what he was in the past, he'll find a niche there that will work for him Triple A and get him ready to help us. Because he is a guy that gives us a little something different from anybody else, which would be a power threat from the left side off the bench."

Riggleman on Orr, who went .200/.360/.250 while playing defense below his standard: "Pete's a very good player. I don't think Pete showed his best here. I think he'd be the first to tell you that. In trying to win a job, I don't think he let himself relax and really be the player he could be."

Riggleman on Martis, who had a 13.50 ERA in 5 1/3 innings: "He just needs to continue to progress. I'm confident that he can not only come up here and help out in the starting rotation at some point, but also pitch out of the bullpen."

By Adam Kilgore  |  March 22, 2010; 8:35 AM ET
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Next: The shape of the Nationals' rotation


I had hoped that Duncan would have a great spring and add something important to the team. If he makes it through waivers, I wonder what it means for him and Kevin Mench, who was playing pretty well, last I looked.

I am still surprised that the Nats haven't been tied to Jermaine Dye, even in rumors. I understand from some of you that his defense has ebbed, and that would not be helpful, but he still hits home runs and he still walks. What is the trade-off?


Posted by: kevincostello | March 22, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

Too bad about Chris Duncan. He seems to have had a promising career that just never took.

Posted by: Handsome_John_Pruitt | March 22, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the updates.

If Bruntlett makes the team who gets removed from the 40-man, any speculation?

Bernadina or Maxwell for the 5th OF spot?

Also, looking at the organizations new depth in pitching (crazy isn't it) what happens when there are not enough minor slots for all of the arms, do we make a trade? I think we will have to by June 1, assuming everyone stays healthy: Wang and SS will join the big club and add to that arms like Stammen, Martis, Chico, Detweiler and Ballestar that is 12 AAA+ pitchers for 10 rotation spots not to mention anyone else who gets assigned to Syracuse and is pitching well, maybe Batista or Atilano. That is not even mentioning the guys who may be held at Harrisburg or Potomac because there is no where for them to go, there is a logjam coming, just wondering if you have any thoughts on the solution??

Posted by: markfd | March 22, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

"If Bruntlett makes the team who gets removed from the 40-man, any speculation?"


Posted by: TBCTBC | March 22, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

@TBCTBC: There is currently one 40 man roster vacancy, but Livan Hernandez is not on the roster. You'd have to cut one more to keep Bruntlett as everyone seems to be assuming that Livo is on.

Posted by: Jeff_Jackson | March 22, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

They could 60 day DL Flores to free up a spot.

Posted by: Sunderland | March 22, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

No one gets "removed" from the 40 man roster TBCTBC? Dukes is gone. He would undoubtedly get his place. As Sunderland said Flores would also free up a positional spot.

12/ St. Dye is now an American League DH. There is no way they throw him in that outfield with Willingham. Or pay him the sort of money he undoubtedly would want. Its time for Michael Burgess to come on if he wants that job that looks taylor made for him.

Posted by: periculum | March 22, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

I still holdout hopes, for Martis to become a pitcher, that both the Nat's and us fans can be proud of.

Posted by: dashriprock | March 22, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

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