Nats' Bowden, Cordero Reach Understanding

By Chico Harlan
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, July 27, 2008

LOS ANGELES, July 26 -- By now, the manner in which General Manager Jim Bowden answered a question during a talk radio interview has triggered the full cycle of emotions -- anger, regret and, to an extent, understanding. Bowden said before Friday's game against the Los Angeles Dodgers that he regrets breaking news of the decision to non-tender relief pitcher Chad Cordero during the interview Wednesday.

At that point, Cordero, just two weeks removed from season-ending labrum surgery, hadn't spoken with Bowden. When he received word via intermediaries, he fumed. "It's like basically being let go of your job over the air," Cordero said Friday, when he arrived at Dodger Stadium to visit teammates.

On Friday, Bowden called Cordero to apologize, as first reported by

Cordero's thoughts: apology accepted.

Bowden's thoughts: "Shame on me. I was on the radio, I wanted to tell the truth and I did. I should have no-commented and pulled away."

When speaking to Cordero, Bowden emphasized that the team still wants to re-sign him this offseason, once he officially becomes a free agent -- the byproduct of the non-tender decision. Bowden indicated that he hopes Cordero accepts a lower salary loaded with incentives; if he's healthy, he'll make money. Cordero said his conversation with Bowden makes the possibility of re-signing more feasible.

"Yeah, it does," said Cordero, making $6.2 million this year. "I'm still upset about how it happened and all that, but I'm not going to let that bother me at all. I have a lot of friends here on the team, and I really wouldn't like to be taken away from them. . . . I'm really not going to sit and worry about whether or not I'll sign back with the Nationals, because it's still five months away."

Guzmán Sits

Shortstop Cristian Guzmán was held out of the lineup Friday night because of a thumb contusion, suffered during the previous series when he was hit on the left hand by a pitch. The team plans to hold Guzmán out through the weekend, giving him two days off followed by the team's scheduled day off Monday. Manager Manny Acta called Guzmán's status day-to-day.

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