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Wieters prepping for season on short schedule

Nats also sign former Opening Day starter Lannan to Minor League deal
MLB.com @JamalCollier

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- The Nationals still do not have a target date for catcher Matt Wieters to make his Grapefruit League debut this year. Wieters officially signed with the Nats and began working out with the team on Feb. 24, making it 11 days on Tuesday that he has been in camp.

Wieters joked that he has experience getting ready on a shortened spring schedule from his time recovering from Tommy John surgery. However, he did estimate he needs about 20-30 at-bats from each side of the plate, and he would like to catch about seven-to-nine games to feel ready to start the season.

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- The Nationals still do not have a target date for catcher Matt Wieters to make his Grapefruit League debut this year. Wieters officially signed with the Nats and began working out with the team on Feb. 24, making it 11 days on Tuesday that he has been in camp.

Wieters joked that he has experience getting ready on a shortened spring schedule from his time recovering from Tommy John surgery. However, he did estimate he needs about 20-30 at-bats from each side of the plate, and he would like to catch about seven-to-nine games to feel ready to start the season.

"Not only working with the staff, but baseball shape, because we're going to need to his bat too," Nats manager Dusty Baker said. "We're going to need his arm, his bat [and] his legs, and so we're going to try not to rush him. But we're going to have to condense it some to get him ready. ... The main thing is catching the pitchers, but we need him as a player too."

Worth noting

• The Nationals signed left-hander John Lannan to a Minor League deal. Lannan, who did not receive an invite to Major League camp, spent six years with the Nats from 2007-12 and was their Opening Day starter in '09 and '10. He has not pitched in the Majors since '14, when he appeared in five games for the Mets, and he spent the '16 season in the Royals' organization.

• Nationals left-hander Nick Lee has a non-displaced fracture in his left elbow that he sustained during Saturday's game against the Cardinals. Lee is scheduled to fly back to Washington for a second MRI soon.

"We knew it was something because of the way he was grimacing, but we didn't know the severity of it," Baker said. "Fortunately, it's not any ligament damage or anything like that. It was a clear fracture, straight across. I'm not a doctor, but they said that was probably as good as it could get, considering."

• Catcher Spencer Kieboom, who was designated for assignment last week, has cleared waivers and will be assigned to Triple-A Syracuse. He will remain in Major League camp as a non-roster invite.

Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier.

Washington Nationals, Matt Wieters