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Game 26: Braves at Nats

May 4, 2010, 7:21 PM EST

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Nationals open a six-game homestand tonight against the Braves.

The last time the Nationals played at home …

— The Capitals were up three games to two on the Canadiens and feeling good about their chances of advancing well past the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

— The Redskins had just traded Jason Campbell to the Raiders.

— Stephen Strasburg had made only three starts for Harrisburg.

It's only been nine days, but it sure feels like a lot has happened in that span. The club that returns home tonight for the start of a six-game homestand has Ryan Zimmerman back healthy and swinging a hot bat, Livan Hernandez and Luis Atilano practically unhittable on the mound and the whole town to itself until the Redskins open training camp in nearly three months.

Hear that sound? It's opportunity knocking at the door. Whether the Nats seize this opportunity remains to be seen. The quest begins tonight against the Braves.

Check back for updates throughout…

Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m.
Radio: WFED-1500 AM, WWFD-820 AM
Weather: Mostly sunny, 76 degrees, Wind 10 mph out to RF

CF Nyjer Morgan
2B Cristian Guzman
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam Dunn

Read more »

  1. Nats fan in NJ - May 4, 2010 at 7:29 PM

    "The Capitals were up three games to two on the Canadiens and feeling good about their chances of advancing well past the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs"Mark – Really?? You had to bring that up? Did my psychiatrist ask you to inhibit my recovery??All kidding aside, the Nats could really build on something between now and July 31st. A strong season, some break-outs and new stars coming up from the horizon – this could be a key turning point for this franchise in winning over the fans.Of course, it all comes down to winning.

  2. Moe Greene - May 4, 2010 at 7:30 PM

    I was thinking the same thing. Mark, please don't mention the Caps again until September.

  3. court - May 4, 2010 at 7:47 PM

    Caps? You mean Matt Capps right?

  4. natsfan1a - May 4, 2010 at 7:52 PM

    Caps, schmaps. Play (base)ball! :-)

  5. Ephesius Remsen Hammersley - May 4, 2010 at 7:55 PM

    I hope Livo can keep the heart of the Braves order quiet. I'll bet Heyward has never seen a Bugs Bunny curve before!!! :)

  6. NatsNut - May 4, 2010 at 8:13 PM

    Had to share this here:my Braves fan brother before getting off the phone with me: "I'm very sorry your team is going to lose their next three games."me: "yea, your team needs a good series to get all the way up to 4th place"

  7. NatinBeantown - May 4, 2010 at 8:16 PM

    Mark (and others)… it's prediction time: What will be the average attendance through the next six games?Factors: lousy weather and attention on Caps no longer a factor, the positive attention from the better-than-expected start, the Heyward factor, etc.What say you?

  8. Tcostant - May 4, 2010 at 8:39 PM

    NatsNut said… guess "the average attendance through the next six games".Me: 17,333, boasted only by Saturday's "Pups at the Park" promotion where dogs are allowed in LF.(Math = 15K/each for the three weekday nights, 18K for Friday, 22K Saturday and 19K on Sunday)

  9. natsfan1a - May 4, 2010 at 8:42 PM

    You tell 'em, NatsNut. :-)Tcostant, I think it was NatinBeantown who asked about attendance. But I'm not into prognosticating so I'll take a pass.

  10. Tcostant - May 4, 2010 at 8:47 PM

    Opps – sorry about that!

  11. K.D. - May 4, 2010 at 10:54 PM

    Livan being showcased on MLB Tonight right now.

  12. Mark Zuckerman - May 4, 2010 at 11:50 PM

    NatinBeantown: Sorry it took me so long to respond to your attendance question, but I'll say they average 18,000 on this homestand. It takes a while for fans to catch onto a competitive team, and the Marlins never draw well, even on a weekend. I figure it'll be about 15,000 a night for the Braves series and then 21,000 average against the Marlins.

  13. Dryw - May 5, 2010 at 12:48 AM

    Two errors before the end of the fifth inning? This feels way too familiar, and not in a good way.

  14. bobn - May 5, 2010 at 12:55 AM

    tell me about the gold speck on the number 6 for Nat players.

  15. K.D. - May 5, 2010 at 1:47 AM

    Ernie may be gone, he won't be forgotten.

  16. Positively Half St. - May 5, 2010 at 2:04 AM

    As far as attendance, I had hoped to go Saturday with my son, but my wife reminded me of his First Communion being that day. Having 3 kids with schedules makes for difficulties getting to add to Kasten's total. I would love to see Zim, Capps, Live, Tyler "The Barber" Clippard and the gang, but it will be difficult for a while.Good wishes to spent prospect Colton Willems, who retired today. Please join us in being a Nats fan. We were always pulling for you.

  17. Positively Half St. - May 5, 2010 at 2:05 AM

    Heh. I didn't mean "Live", but "Livo".Please don't make this interesting, Batista. Capps doesn't need another save.

  18. natsfan1a - May 5, 2010 at 3:01 AM

    Atta boy, Livo, you silver-haired devil. :-)

  19. natsfan1a - May 5, 2010 at 3:02 AM

    And R.I.P Ernie Harwell.

  20. greg - May 5, 2010 at 4:20 AM

    saturday will have at least a few hundred seats purchased that might not normally get purchased. it's pups in the park day (and those sections are sold out already). i'll be there with my 135# mastiff/bloodhound mix.speaking of pups in the park… mark, do you know whether they count the dog tickets purchased as attendees? i would think so, just sounds funny to say it.for those who didn't know it was coming, there's a second pups in the park day scheduled for late august. buy your tix now if you want to go, it *will* sell out again. people seats: $20; dog seats: $5 (donated to a shelter or ASPCA or something like that).

  21. Dryw - May 5, 2010 at 10:26 AM

    …and it is SO not last year!





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