MILWAUKEE - Nationals outfielder Rick Ankiel, who has been out since spraining his right wrist on a diving catch on May 2, will start a rehab assignment at Double-A Harrisburg tonight. He could be back with the Nationals in a week or two if all goes well.
Once the Nationals take Ankiel off the disabled list, they'll have to start making some decisions about how they want their outfield to look. Ankiel, Roger Bernadina and Laynce Nix are all left-handed hitters who can play left field or center field, and while the Nationals could keep them all here by sending Brian Bixler back to the minors or putting Adam LaRoche on the disabled list, they'll need another roster spot when Ryan Zimmerman comes off the disabled list next month. And even if they keep all their outfielders, they'll have to find a way to divvy up playing time between them.
If LaRoche winds up needing to rest (or get an operation to repair) his left shoulder and Michael Morse gets some playing time at first base, that would loosen things up somewhat.