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Posted at 03:37 PM ET, 08/17/2012

Ian Desmond returns from the DL, Cesar Izturis designated for assignment

(Greg Fiume - GETTY IMAGES)
The Nationals activated Ian Desmond from the disabled list on Friday, after missing the past 25 games with an oblique strain, and designated backup infielder Cesar Izturis for assignment. For the first time, minus the loss of catcher Wilson Ramos, the Nationals will have a near-complete lineup.

Desmond, who was perhaps the Nationals’ most valuable player until his injury, landed on the disabled list on July 22 with an oblique strain that wouldn’t go away. Before his injury, Desmond, an all-star, was hitting .286 with 17 home runs with 53 runs batted in.

The Nationals claimed Izturis, known for his strong fielding, off waivers on Aug. 6 from the Milwaukee Brewers as an insurance policy for Desmond, and infielders Danny Espinosa and Steve Lombardozzi. But Izturis saw action in only five games and notched two hits in four at-bats.

With the roster moves, Lombardozzi and Tyler Moore, both rookies, remain on the Nationals roster. Moore seemed like a potential candidate to be sent down to minor leagues to make room for Desmond. But the Nationals feel strongly about Moore and, even though he would see less at-bats in the majors, value his power right-handed bat.

More to come.

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By  |  03:37 PM ET, 08/17/2012

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