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With deal, Nats and Detwiler avoid arbitration

WASHINGTON -- Left-hander Ross Detwiler avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year deal with the Nationals, the team announced on Thursday night. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Detwiler missed most of the 2013 season because of back issues, but he was healthy enough to participate in the instructional league toward the end of the season.

In Detwiler's final start, he threw 90 pitches and was able to perform bunt plays without any problems.

The question now is what role Detwiler play in 2014. He will compete with Tanner Roark and Taylor Jordan for the fifth spot in the rotation, but general manager Mike Rizzo didn't rule out the possibility of him starting the season in the bullpen.

"Ross is a very unique situation. He pitched extremely well for us this year [before he injured his back]," Rizzo said in November. "I think he could bolster our bullpen and give us some depth as a starter. What we did learn from last year is that we have good young starting pitching. When you look at what Taylor Jordan did at his age, what Tanner Roark did and even Nathan Karns -- those are three names that should be able to help us next season."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats.
Read More: Washington Nationals, Ross Detwiler