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Vegas gives Nats second-highest projected win total in opening odds

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Vegas gives Nats second-highest projected win total in opening odds

In what is becoming somewhat of a yearly tradition, the oddsmakers at Vegas are yet again expecting big things out of the Washington Nationals during the regular season. This time, in their opening 2016 MLB win total projections, the folks over at Bovada.lv gave the Nats the second-highest number out of all 30 MLB teams at 89 1/2, which is tied with the Mets and Giants.

Only the Cubs are destined for more success than Washington, New York and San Francisco in the eyes of Bovada; the site listed Chicago's opening projection at 92 1/2. As for the rest of the NL East, there are the Marlins at 79 1/2, the Braves at 66 1/2, and the Phillies at 65 1/2. Atlanta and Philadelphia are second-to-last and last, respectively.

Last season, the Nats' number was 92.5, and in the year before that, it was 88.5. They fell short of their projections by a comfortable margin in 2015 (after winning 83 games) but blew past them in 2014 (winning 96). 

Here is the full list:

MLB Win Totals (From Highest to Lowest)

Chicago Cubs                           92½

New York Mets                          89½

San Francisco Giants                89½

Washington Nationals                89½

Los Angeles Dodgers                88½

Houston Astros                         87½

St. Louis Cardinals                    87½

Toronto Blue Jays                     87½

Boston Red Sox                       86½

Pittsburgh Pirates                      86½

Kansas City Royals                   85½

New York Yankees                    85½

Cleveland Indians                      84½

Texas Rangers                          84½

Arizona Diamondbacks              82½

Seattle Mariners                        82½

Detroit Tigers                            81½

Los Angeles Angels                  81½

Tampa Bay Rays                       81½

Chicago White Sox                    80½

Baltimore Orioles                       79½

Miami Marlins                            79½

Minnesota Twins                        78½

Oakland Athletics                      75½

San Diego Padres                     73½

Cincinnati Reds                         70½

Colorado Rockies                     70½

Milwaukee Brewers                    69½

Atlanta Braves                           66½

Philadelphia Phillies                   65½

While these odds don't mean much, especially considering a spring training game hasn't even been played yet, they can a somewhat useful tool in looking at who's supposed to be contending for a title and who's supposed to be contending for the league's emptiest stadium come September.

For example, it's clear that Bovada thinks the Nats and Mets will be fighting for the division crown all year long. Atlanta and Philadelphia, however? Eh — not so much.

MORE NATIONALS: PICTURE DAY FOR THE 2016 NATS

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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