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Zimmerman hoping Nats sign Strasburg

Zimmerman hoping Strasburg signs

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CINCINNATI -- Third baseman Ryan Zimmerman is one guy who would like to see the Nationals sign Stephen Strasburg, the team's No. 1 pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft. The Nationals have until Monday at midnight ET to get Strasburg signed.

Zimmerman, Washington's first-round pick in the 2005 First-Year Player Draft, believes the Nationals will become a better team once Strasburg is in the fold.

"This organization is going in the right direction," Zimmerman said. "If you want to keep going in the right direction, you sign your top picks. That's how you get better. That's why the Draft is there. That's why the team with the worst record gets the first pick and the best player. Hopefully, he will make the team better, compete and make the playoffs."

During this negotiation process, Zimmerman has never met nor talked to Strasburg, but has heard nothing but good things about the talented right-hander.

Asked what would he say to Strasburg about playing in Washington, Zimmerman said, "It's good place to play. I understand that it's a business. You obviously have to get what you think is fair for you. At the same time, you did what you did to sign and you make your real money when you make it [in the big leagues]."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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