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Nats' Goodwin notches first big-league hit vs. Indians

Nats' Goodwin notches first big-league hit vs. Indians

No matter the circumstances, every ballplayer remembers everything about the moment they got their first major-league hit.

And for Nationals rookie outfielder Brian Goodwin, that milestone came in his third game and sixth at-bat in The Show, an eighth-inning single to right field off reliever Zach McAllister in Wednesday's 7-4 win over the Cleveland Indians

As is the custom, the Indians retrieved the ball and returned it to the Nats so Goodwin would have it as a keepsake. But as the 25-year-old intimated, it sounds like someone else in the family might have first dibs.   

"My mom's outside [the clubhouse]," he said while smiling at his locker, "so I assume I won't have [the ball] much longer."

The memento is sure to be cherished, especially because Goodwin’s journey to the big leagues took longer than some expected it to. He was once considered one of the Nats' top prospects after he was selected 34th overall in the 2011 MLB Amateur Draft. However, the Rocky Mount, North Carolina native had a few down seasons in the minors and the Arizona Fall League that left some wondering if he'd ever make good on his potential. His first few years as a pro saw him go from being considered MLB.com's No. 52 prospect in 2013 to rarely listed in any baseball publication. 

But thanks to a breakout 2016 campaign at Triple-A Syracuse, one in which he's slashed .284/.350/.434 with 11 home runs and 62 RBI, the Nats saw fit to promote him after the the team put Ryan Zimmerman on the 15-day disabled list. 

“Brian has a lot of talent,” manager Dusty Baker said. “He’s really gotten it together. He went to Venezuela, I think, last winter, and he’s come a long ways. He had a good year at Triple-A. He’s confident. He can play all three outfield positions. Everybody was so happy for him tonight to get his first hit.”

"I think a lot of [my teammates] were more excited than I was," Goodwin said. "But those guys just rallied around me and supported me and they were positive with me the whole time, everybody was ecstatic." 

Goodwin's stay with the big club isn't likely a permanent one, with Zimmerman expected to return soon. But even if that's the case and he eventually returns to Triple-A, he'll always have his experiences of the last week in his back pocket. 

"I kind of just been here enjoying the moment," Goodwin said. "Just trying to take it and enjoy every minute as I could...[it] hasn't [sunk in] yet."

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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