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Nationals reward GM Rizzo

The SportsXchange

Washington Nationals executive Mike Rizzo received an additional title and an new contract on Thursday.

The team promoted Rizzo, 52, to president of baseball operations and signed him to a long-term extension. No financial details or length of the contract were released. He will continue to serve as general manager.

"Upon purchasing the Nationals, Mike Rizzo was our first hire and he has performed brilliantly," owner Ted Lerner said in the statement. "We started with an idea about how baseball teams should be built and he translated it into a reality far faster than many could have imagined.

"He knows the game, the players, and is a true professional. Under his direct leadership, the Nationals have become one of the most exciting and respected young teams in baseball."

Rizzo was named general manager in August 2009 after six months as interim GM. He joined the franchise when it moved to Washington in 2006.

"We've made significant progress toward our goal of competing for a World Series championship," Rizzo said. "I intend to do everything in my power to one day hand that trophy to Mr. Lerner at Nationals Park. We've still got work to do."

The Nationals have been arguably the most disappointing team in the game this year at 52-56, but they have a strong young core and it would not take a major overhaul to turn them back into contenders next season.
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