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Nats' 2B Murphy hurt hamstring playing in All-Star Game

Nats' 2B Murphy hurt hamstring playing in All-Star Game

One of the favorites for the NL MVP award is not off to an ideal start in the second half of the season.

Originally set to start for the Nationals at first base on Friday night, Daniel Murphy was scratched 90 minutes before first pitch with a sore left hamstring. He sustained the injury while sliding into second base in the ninth inning of Tuesday's All-Star Game in San Diego.

"I just felt some tightness," Murphy said. "I think that after speaking with the training staff, we felt that it was the best idea to give it a day. Then we'll come in tomorrow and see how it feels."

Murphy is considered day-to-day. He was replaced on Friday by Clint Robinson, who singled twice with an RBI and a run scored.

Robinson filled in well, but surely the Nationals will want their All-Star second baseman back soon. Murphy currently leads the majors with a .348 batting average and has a career-high 17 homers already.

"We can't lose Murphy for any period of time," manager Dusty Baker said. "The leg is hurting, but it's not too bad. We want to stop it before it gets to something worse."

Murphy hurt his leg after singling in his third at-bat of Tuesday's Midsummer Classic. He was one of four players on the NL squad to register three ABs in the game.

Murphy ran hard to second on a groundball hit by Paul Goldschmidt, who came to the plate representing the tying run with the AL leading 4-2. With home field advantage for the World Series on the line, it's hard to blame Murphy for hustling on the base paths, despite the game technically being an exhibition event.

[RELATED: Strasburg dominates as Nats begin 2nd half with win over Pirates]

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With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

WASHINGTON  -- The Washington Nationals say they have agreed to a one-year deal with 40-year-old reliever Joaquin Benoit.

The team announced the move Wednesday, along with placing pitcher Joe Ross on the 60-day disabled list as he recovers from Tommy John surgery in July.

The Nationals didn't release terms of the agreement, though a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Monday that it was for $1 million.

The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the deal wasn't official at the time.

MORE NATIONALS: FULL 2018 SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE

Benoit is a right-hander who first reached the big leagues in 2001. 

He has played for eight teams, finishing last year with Pittsburgh.

He has 764 career appearances, going 58-49 with a 3.83 ERA and 53 saves.

RELATED: 2018 MLB BETTING ODDS

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It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

So if you have not heard, Bryce Harper is going to be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2018 season.

All off-season talking heads, baseball aficionados, radio hosts, etc. were speculating on where the outfielder’s destination will be next year.

And we are still a year away from it actually happening.

RELATED: VEGAS SETS OVER/UNDERS FOR 2018 MLB SEASON

Reporting to spring training on Monday, Harper did not waste any time telling the media how his press conferences were going to play out this season.

“If guys do [ask], or talk anything about that, I will be walking right out the door.”

Entering his seventh season with the Washington Nationals, the 25-year-old is coming off the second-best season, statistically, of his career. The 2015 NL MVP has hit .285 in his career, with 150 home runs and 421 RBIs. Unquestionably he is the face of the Nationals’ organization, if not, the best player in the team’s history.

If he does end the season without a contract extension, he will join Rafael Palmeiro, Alex Rodriguez, Randy Johnson, and Barry Bonds as the top sought out free agents in MLB history.

One thing is for certain in terms of Harper’s free agency; Harper has given no inclination on where his landing spot will be.  The top three cities are of course his favorite childhood team, the New York Yankees; joining with one of his closest friends with the Chicago Cubs; or just staying with Washington.

Wherever he does land, it does appear that it will be the largest contract given to a free agent ever.

As for now we just wait and direct any of your calls to his agent Scott Boras.

READ ALSO: NATIONALS FULL SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE