MIAMI - The Nationals' bullpen, which looked in need of some help last night, might be a step closer to getting it.
Reliever Henry Rodriguez is headed to Double-A Harrisburg on a rehab assignment after working through a neck injury in the Nationals' accelerated minor league camp in Viera, Fla.
Rodriguez had lost control of his mechanics just before going on the disabled list at the end of spring training, walking three batters in 2 1/3 innings and throwing just eight of 24 pitches for strikes in his first spring outing. He's always had control issues, which have prevented him from being a full-time closer despite his 100 mph fastball, and the neck injury that put him on the disabled list wasn't considered serious.
But if Rodriguez can cut his walks down, the Nationals will give him a shot; he has no minor league options, and was the central piece in the trade that sent Josh Willingham to Oakland this winter.