The Nationals today sent J.D. Martin down to Triple-A, reducing the number of pitchers competing for the final spot in the rotation to two: Scott Olsen and Garrett Mock.

The spring training roster is down to 36.  Final cuts have to be made by Sunday evening.

Mock walked five yesterday in his latest appearance and was knocked around quite a bit, giving up seven hits and the five walks for six runs (five earned) over four and two-thirds innings. He struck out three.

Olsen is scheduled to start on Friday against Boston in his last chance to secure the roster spot. He was mildly effective in his last start, but still has not topped 86-87 MPH with his fastball. He may be "healthy", but also might not have enough arm strength built up to be a contributing member of a MLB rotation.

Today is the deadline the Nats have to release him or be on the hook for his entire 2010 salary of $1 million. So if the axe doesn't fall on Olsen today, he'll remain with the organization in some capacity.