Jordan states case; no decision yet on fifth starter

Young Nats righty pleased with spring performance coming off broken ankle

Jordan states case; no decision yet on fifth starter

JUPITER, Fla. -- Nationals right-hander Taylor Jordan made a great case to become the fifth starter in the team's rotation Monday. He allowed a run in 5 2/3 innings and struck out two in a 4-1 victory over the Marlins.

Jordan is competing against Tanner Roark and Chris Young for the fifth spot, but Jordan reiterated that he wasn't thinking about that.

"I'm not really confident in anything. I'm going to play it by ear," Jordan said. "I'm happy to go to Triple-A. It's still a bump up for me. I've never even been to Triple-A. So like I said last year: It was a blessing to be up in the big leagues. I didn't expect anything."

For the spring, he was 2-2 with a 3.92 ERA. Jordan was pleased with his performance considering that he was coming off a right ankle injury this offseason. He broke the ankle coming out of a swimming pool last October.

"After breaking my ankle this offseason, I'm extremely pleased that I'm as healthy as I am right now," Jordan said.

Manager Matt Williams declined to say when he will make a decision on his fifth starter, but he said it will be difficult.

"We don't have a deadline. We are going to get back to [Viera, Fla.] today and talk about it," Williams said. "I imagine that we talk about it [Tuesday] and get a consensus from everybody. No deadline as of right now."

Whomever wins the fifth spot in the rotation, he will likely pitch the home opener April 4 against the Braves.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.