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Ramos stars in Nats' win over Braves at the plate and behind it

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Ramos stars in Nats' win over Braves at the plate and behind it

Wilson Ramos defied his reputation as an injury prone player in 2015 to appear in a career-high 128 games for the Nationals, but not once during that stretch did he put in a performance that featured as many hits as he had on Monday night.

In the Nationals' 6-4 win over the Braves, Ramos matched a career-high by going 4-for-4 and recorded his third multi-hit outing in five games this season. One of those hits delivered the go-ahead RBI and another added an insurance run two innings later.

Some may point to the corrective eye surgery Ramos had in spring training as a big reason he is off to a hot start this year. Ramos, though, decided to single out hitting coach Rick Schu.

"It helped me a lot when Rick Schu told me to look at videos because I'm keeping in mind that I can do a good job with my swing, my adjustment today I tried to stay to the middle all the time that's when I hit the ball well, stay to the middle, not try to pull the ball and I did it today. Try to stay to the middle, try to hit the ball hard and that's what happens when I stay like that," Ramos said.

Manager Dusty Baker also pointed to the extra film study with Schu.

"Wilson's been a little frustrated lately. He went to work with Rick Schu, and Rick's real good. He sent him some film or some things to look at. Usually it's a minor correction. You look for something major, and it's usually something minor that's happening in your stroke. I tell you, he hit the ball good tonight," Baker said.

Ramos singled in the first, third, fifth and seventh innings. His single in the fifth struck umpire Bob Davidson in shallow left field and scored Ryan Zimmerman from third. That put the Nats up 5-4.

Ramos' next single was a floater that landed in right field in the seventh inning, a hit that brought Zimmerman home again, this time to put the Nats up 6-4 and allow them some more breathing room.

The two hits made the difference in the game, but it wasn't just Ramos' offense that made him stand out. Just like he did the day before with Dee Gordon, Ramos caught a dangerous runner on a steal attempt at second.

On Monday, it was Braves prospect Mallex Smith, a center fielder making his MLB debut with a reputation as a base stealing threat preceding him. Smith reached on a forceout at second in the fourth inning and took off on a Max Scherzer fastball with Nick Markakis at the plate. Ramos threw a laser to Danny Espinosa at second base and got Smith by a matter of inches.

"I worked a lot with that during spring training, throwing to base, and that's what happens when you work," Ramos said. "Just try to put the ball on the money and that's what happens when you work."

Ramos continued to talk about work when discussing his day at the plate.

"My swing, two days ago 0-for-4, yesterday 0-for-4 again, but I come today and I hit 4-for-4 that's because I was working in the cage. I work in the cage to try and hit the ball better and I did it well. thats what happen when you work," he said.

Hey, whatever works.

[RELATED: Nats beat Braves, as Scherzer recovers from rocky start]

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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