That leaves Brian Bruney and Sean Burnett as the only remaining arbitration-eligible players for the Nationals.
Willingham didn't sign his $2.95 million deal for the 2009 season until right before his scheduled arbitration hearing last year. The 30-year-old hit .260 with 24 homers and 61 RBIs in 133 games this past season and has been pretty steady in his four full seasons in the big leagues -- three of which have been spent with the Marlins. In that span, Willingham has put up a .265 batting average while averaging 22 homers and 69 RBIs per season.
The 25-year-old Flores, who had "Super Two" status for arbitration this year, was limited to just 29 games in 2009 -- batting .301 -- because of shoulder problems that eventually led to a September surgery, which has him questionable for Opening Day. Flores, who made just over $400,000 last season, saw his most big league action during his second season, when he played in 90 games and batted .256 with eight homers and 59 RBIs.
The 32-year-old Nieves hit .259 with a career-high 26 RBIs while playing in a career-high 72 games this past season. But with Ivan Rodriguez signed, he may not have a spot on the 25-man roster in 2010 if Flores proves he's healthy.
Bergmann went 2-4 with a 4.50 ERA in 56 games during his fifth season last year. Since 2006, the 28-year-old right-hander's ERA has gone no lower than 4.45.
Based on figures released on Tuesday in anticipation of a potential arbitration hearing next month, Washington is $350,000 apart with Bruney and $150,000 apart with Burnett. Bruney seeks $1.85 million for the 2010 season, but the Nationals submitted an offer of $1.5 million. Meanwhile, Bruney wants $925,000, with the club offering $775,000.
Arbitration hearings will be scheduled at some point between Feb. 1 and 21, though clubs can still negotiate until their respective scheduled hearings. If it does go to a hearing, one of the figures publicized on Tuesday will be selected.
Bruney made $1.25 million this past season and is going into his third year of arbitration. The 27-year-old made 44 relief appearances for the World Series-champion Yankees in 2009, going 5-0 with a 3.92 ERA and a 1.57 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Bruney is 16-10 with a 4.27 ERA in six seasons in the big leagues, and he notched 12 saves with the Diamondbacks in '05. He'll have a chance to compete for the closer job this season.
Burnett, also 27, is coming off a career year in his third season, one that saw him post a 3.12 ERA and a 1.110 WHIP for the Pirates and Nationals. Burnett is arbitration-eligible for the first time and made just over $400,000 in 2009. For his three-year career, he is 8-9 with a 4.35 ERA in 142 games (13 starts).