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Worth noting

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• In addition to Rodriguez being used for the seventh inning, Johnson confirmed that Ryan Mattheus will be used to pitch the setup role in the seventh. Tyler Clippard and Drew Storen will be in eighth-inning roles, and closing if necessary. Rafael Soriano will be used to close.

"Last year was kind of an aberration, because even my long man was setting up and different guys out of the 'pen were closing," Johnson said. "So it's depending how they go and what role they settle into. It's no secret. … I run a bullpen more on trying to keep the guys not overly used, and balancing both sides of the 'pen."

• Utility men Micah Owings and Carlos Rivero will be sent down to Minor League camp after Thursday's game against the Mets.

• Jayson Werth was fine after getting hit on the left elbow with a pitch on Wednesday, but he was held out of Thursday's lineup anyway.

"Before Jayson got hit on the elbow, he said, 'Two, maybe three' [at-bats on Thursday],'" Johnson said. "It went from, 'Two, maybe three' to 'Zippo.' He's all right. Just got him on the funny bone."

• Bryce Harper was back after missing a game to nurse his sore left thumb. All of the Nationals' regulars are expected to at least start in Friday's exhibition against the Yankees at Nationals Park.

"We're going to be on our home turf," Johnson said. "Everybody's going to want to get reacquainted with the ground and the walls."

Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak.& This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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