Nationals News: Rick Ankiel brings wealth of experience to new role


Good morning DoD readers, and welcome to today’s District Daily! Things are really starting to heat up for the Nationals as Spring Trainings games get underway tomorrow afternoon, so there’s plenty of news to talk about coming out of Viera, Fla.

In today’s Daily,’s Jamal Collier discusses former Nationals’ outfielder Rick Ankiel, who is back with the organization this year as the team’s new life skills coordinator.

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As Collier writes, Ankiel brings a wealth of experience to the job and should be a great addition to a team that still boasts plenty of young players who may benefit from Ankiel’s contributions.

Also in today’s Daily,’s Mike Bauman discusses the excitement surrounding the Nationals as they continue to prepare for the 2015 season. As we know, the Nationals will enter the season with one of the deepest rosters in the game and arguably the best starting rotation in all of baseball, so there’s plenty of excitement and high expectations for this ball club as we approach Opening Day.

Be sure to checkout Bauman’s article below, it’s definitely worth a read. And as always, stay tuned to DoD for all your Nationals Spring Training needs.

Ankiel brings wealth of experience to new role

(Jamal Collier,

VIERA, Fla. — Rick Ankiel, the Nationals’ new life skills coordinator, arrived at the team’s spring facility on Tuesday for his first day on the job, which he spent introducing himself to some players while getting reacquainted with others.

Washington hired Ankiel to the new position in January, and he is hoping to use the wealth of his experiences in the Majors to impart wisdom through the team’s Minor League system.

“I’m a resource and a confidant for these guys,” Ankiel said. “Anything they need help with. If they want to talk about stuff on the field or they want to talk about something off the field, whatever it may be, I’m just here for them to lean on and pass along the things that I’ve learned along my way. Read full article here.

There’s an air of excitement in Nationals’ camp

(Mike Bauman,

VIERA, Fla. — The key word here is “excited” or “exciting” or “excitement.”

But this is not child-at-Christmas-jumping-for-joy-right-now excitement. This is more like the healthy anticipation of down-the-road achievement, on the part of highly competitive adults.

The prospects of the Washington Nationals are exciting, even for neutral observers of the game. They had, by the numbers, the best pitching staff in baseball last year. They also had the best record in the National League. Then they added the leading free-agent pitcher, Max Scherzer.

The appropriate response was probably “Wow!”

“I was excited,” said Jordan Zimmermann, who has been the most effective starting pitcher for the Nationals over the past two seasons. Read full article here.

Next: Nationals 2015 Player Profile: Taylor Jordan

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