From the Cutting Room Floor: Lunch With Mark Lerner

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Rebuilding is not the word Washington Nationals fans want to hear, and after several losing seasons, the team believes it finally has a strong enough minor league system and that adding key pieces like Jayson Werth and Adam LaRoche will pay dividends this year.

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Nats Owner Remains Optimistic

Rebuilding is not the word Washington Nationals fans want to hear, and after several losing seasons, the team believes it finally has a strong enough minor league system and that adding key pieces like Jayson Werth and Adam LaRoche will pay dividends this year.
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What you didn't see on Lunch With Lindsay with Washington Nationals principal owner Mark Lerner.

Why you should be excited about the upcoming Nationals season: The Nationals might have shocked you dishing out $126 million on a multi-year contract for outfielder Jayson Werth. Lerner says it makes perfect sense. He told me that after he and his father met with Werth and his agent in LA when they were discussing the deal, the way Werth spoke, the way he asked questions and talked about “going to war” with his new teammates, the two men walked out of the office, looked at each other and said “that’s our guy.” They think he is the one piece that can change the franchise because of his leadership in the clubhouse.

Close call: Lerner was smacked in the face and suffered an injury that required stitches while shagging balls at Nats Park last year -- not a lot of owners can say that.

The one decision he’d like to have back: He won’t say, doesn’t like 20/20 hindsight. The biggest lesson he learned is to always continue to learn patience. (He’s had good practice.)

The toughest challenge to conquer as an owner is: Having patience.

Biggest baseball memory: Skipping school on opening day. His first game was when Lerner was 5. His dad took him to Griffith Stadium.

Interesting nuggets: Lerner is an avid movie buff. “The King’s Speech” was the best movie he’s seen. He is a self-proclaimed “neat freak.” Says after his three kids were grown and left the house, he and his wife moved from Potomac to downtown D.C.

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