Nationals Acquire Brian Bruney; Release Saul Rivera

4:11pm:  The Yanks will receive the Nationals' Rule 5 pick for Bruney, reports Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News.

12:51pm: The Nationals confirmed the deal via a press release.  They released Saul Rivera to make room for Bruney.  Rivera, 32 today, posted a 6.10 ERA in 38.3 innings for the Nats this year.  Releasing a man on his birthday…for shame!  Saul did receive one gift: he's now on our 2010 free agents list.

11:56am: The Nationals acquired reliever Brian Bruney from the Yankees for a player to be named later, tweets Joel Sherman of the New York Post.  Bruney, who is arbitration-eligible, is due a small raise on this year's $1.25MM salary.  He's under team control through 2011. 

The hard-throwing righty, who turns 28 in February, posted a 3.92 ERA in 39 innings this year, striking out 36 but walking 23.  Plagued by elbow troubles, Bruney was bumped from the Yankees' set-up role for Phil Hughes in July.  He figures to be high in the pecking order of Washington's pen, perhaps even a closer candidate if Mike MacDougal is non-tendered.

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