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Rodriguez has elbow surgery

Rodriguez has elbow surgery

Henry Rodriguez has made two stints on the disabled list this season for injuries the Nationals said were to his index finger and his lower back. Turns out the biggest issue with the erratic reliever was a bone spur in his right elbow that required surgery today.

Rodriguez was operated on by team orthopedist Wiemi Douoguih; he may not be able to pitch in winter ball but is expected to be fully healed for the start of spring training.

General manager Mike Rizzo said Rodriguez only began complaining about discomfort in his elbow in roughly mid-July, but it's not certain how long he was pitching with the injury, or what effect it had on his performance. After failing to surrender an earned run in any of his first nine appearances this season, Rodriguez posted an 8.14 ERA over his final 26 games.

"I'm not sure what the effect was, but Henry has got great upside," Rizzo said. "He's a power pitcher, and if this injury prevented him from performing at his accustomed level, then that's a good thing. Because when he gets healthy, he should revert back to the guy we saw in spring training and the guy we saw at the beginning of the season."

Rizzo said this injury was similar to the one that caused fellow reliever Drew Storen to miss the season's first 3 12 months. Given a comparable recovery time, Rodriguez could be healed by December, at which point he could appear in some winter league games in his native Venezuela in preparation for spring training.

The Nationals will face the same dilemma with the 25-year-old next year as it did this year: Because Rodriguez is out of options, he will have to make the Opening Day roster or else be exposed to waivers.

Meanwhile, top Nationals draft pick Lucas Giolito underwent Tommy John surgery today, a procedure planned over the last week. Giolito, the 16th overall pick in the June draft, was operated on in his native Los Angeles by orthopedist Lewis Yocum. He's expected to miss the entire 2013 season.

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Nationals re-sign Howie Kendrick for two-years

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Nationals re-sign Howie Kendrick for two-years

WASHINGTON  -- The Nationals have agreed to a $7 million, two-year contract with outfielder Howie Kendrick, a deal subject to a successful physical.

Agent Pat Murphy confirmed the deal to The Associated Press on Monday. USA Today was first to report the deal.

Kendrick, 34, hit .293 with seven home runs and RBIs in 52 games with Washington after he was acquired from Philadelphia. The versatile right-handed hitter got just three plate appearances off the bench in the playoffs.

In 12 major league seasons with the Los Angeles Angels, Dodgers, Phillies and Nationals, Kendrick is a .291 hitter with a .755 OPS. He's now primarily an outfielder for Washington after playing left field, second base, first base and other positions throughout his career.

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See hilarious highlights from Nats' Racing Presidents tryouts

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USA Today Sports Images

See hilarious highlights from Nats' Racing Presidents tryouts

Ever wonder how you can become one of the Washington Nationals' Racing Presidents or what it takes to get the job?

The team recently detailed the requirements and held tryouts on Sunday for the next group of presidents to carry on the 12-season tradition.

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While the basic requirements are pretty standard — be at least 18 years old, have a high school diploma, etc. — the specifics are quite unusual compared with a typical job. Among them, presidential candidates need to be at least 5-foot-7 but no taller than 6-foot-6 and able to run from centerfield to first base in a 50-pound costume. Needless to say, those who were invited to try out had to be in pretty good physical shape.

So in bitter cold temperatures, participants raced against each other in a 40-yard dash with the 50-pound costume on. They also danced.

Here are some of the highlights from Sunday’s Racing Presidents tryouts.

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