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Game 40: Nats at Cardinals

May 18, 2010, 8:45 PM EST

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Nats and Cards wrap up their series at Busch Stadium tonight.

The Nationals reach the quarter-pole of the season tonight, Game 40 of 162, with a chance to come home with a winning record.

Of course, to do that, they'll have to beat Cardinals ace Chris Carpenter, no small challenge. (Carpenter is a career 5-1 with a 3.56 ERA against the Nationals franchise.) John Lannan, meanwhile, takes the mound for Washington, hoping his elbow/forearm doesn't flare up as it did in the fifth inning Thursday at Coors Field. Lannan has his own impressive track record against St. Louis' best hitters — Albert Pujols is 0-for-5 with a walk against him lifetime, Matt Holliday is 1-for-6.

The Nationals won't, however, have their best power hitter once again. Adam Dunn is out of the lineup for the third straight day, still hampered by flu-like symptoms. Adam Kennedy again starts at first base in Dunn's place.

Since Drew Storen made his debut last night — and that was the reason I went to St. Louis in the first place — I flew back home this morning. I'll be back at Nationals Park tomorrow when the Nats open a two-game series against the Mets. In the meantime, enjoy conversing with each other about tonight's game from Busch…

Where: Busch Stadium
Gametime: 8:15 p.m.
Radio: WFED-1500 AM, WWFD-820 AM
Weather: Mostly sunny, 68 degrees, Wind 11 mph in from LF

CF Nyjer Morgan
2B Cristian Guzman
3B Ryan Zimmerman
LF Josh Willingham

Read more »

  1. Janner33 - May 18, 2010 at 8:59 PM

    OK "Natinals"… I know you've been off since the rain delayed game against the Rox, but make this island boy proud with a win against Carpenter, then come home and start another win streak against the Nyets! GO NATS!!

  2. K.D. - May 18, 2010 at 9:00 PM

    I am a little bit surprised Pudge isn't in the line-up. He has a pretty good history hitting against Chris Carpenter.

  3. Knoxville Nat - May 18, 2010 at 10:08 PM

    Jet lag must have caused Mark to list two CF's in our lineup tonight. :)

  4. Dan - May 18, 2010 at 10:33 PM

    The absence of Adam Dunn again in tonight's lineup and the obvious difference that makes overall will, I hope, serve as a nudge to management to work hard to re-sign him soon.

  5. Grandstander - May 18, 2010 at 11:01 PM

    No Dunn and no Pudge make Grandstander go something something…Go crazy?Don't mind if I do!;alskdnjf;an;foina;lsdknf;lansd;lfnasdglfkn

  6. natsfan1a - May 18, 2010 at 11:30 PM

    Those are some beautiful pics you've been taking, Mark.

  7. yankish2 - May 18, 2010 at 11:55 PM

    I am starting to wonder about Dunn's 'flue-like symptoms'. Is there more to it than the flu? Just a thought…

  8. Souldrummer - May 19, 2010 at 12:08 AM

    That there is one awful lineup. We need Dunn back and we need some more depth. Mike Morse you're on notice to show something as a PH so we can keep you around.

  9. Sec3 Mice Ofah - May 19, 2010 at 12:30 AM

    "flue-like symptoms" is from smoking like a chimney?

  10. K.D. - May 19, 2010 at 12:44 AM

    I am new to the Nats and even I don't think Dunn would play games. Rizzo doesn't seem like the kind of fellow to take kindly to holding out. Besides that Dunn was starting to heat up, wouldn't make any sense.

  11. meixler - May 19, 2010 at 12:54 AM

    Oooh, Nyjer didn't like that Cards fan stealing his glove. Got get 'em, Tony Plush!

  12. Anonymous - May 19, 2010 at 12:56 AM

    The lineup is a grim flashback to 2006-2009. A flaccid, doomed lineup against a team that over-matches us at 8 positions on the field.We have the same odds of winning this game as the Orioles have a reaching 3,000 in attendance at tonight's game at Camden Yards: zero.

  13. meixler - May 19, 2010 at 1:00 AM

    Via New York Mets are planning to start right-hander R.A. Dickey on Wednesday. Dickey is scheduled to be called up from Triple-A Buffalo [and] he'll start the opener of another brief series at Washington. The knuckleballer has previously pitched in the big leagues with Minnesota, Seattle and Texas.

  14. meixler - May 19, 2010 at 1:06 AM

    Stop me if you've heard this before… Nats have a runner on third with less than 2 outs and can't get him home. D'oh!

  15. Sec3 - May 19, 2010 at 1:13 AM

    Man, lose a couple of games and it's right back to the doom and gloom. Geez.

  16. Aussie Gus - May 19, 2010 at 1:43 AM

    So I am at work, someone flicks on the TV, and it's Nats v Cards on Aussie Pay TV!!! The first game I've actually been able to see ALL YEAR!

  17. Anonymous - May 19, 2010 at 1:45 AM

    It's exactly like watching someone strangle your beloved cat in your living room. Slow, painful, certain.

  18. meixler - May 19, 2010 at 1:58 AM

    Willie Harris WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU!?

  19. Dryw - May 19, 2010 at 1:59 AM

    Same thing is wrong with Willie as with the rest of the team. A sudden allergy to hits with men on base.

  20. JohnD - May 19, 2010 at 2:01 AM

    ever since you wrote about how well this team has been hitting after the 14 run game they have been TERRIBLE!!!!!!!!!! I love your writings and read them everynight but you jinxed them!! they can't hit with runners in scoring position for their lives! Willie Harris is completely lost at the plate and Rigs continues to go to him!!! Man i feel bad for my remote control right now. Pathetic baseball of late.

  21. meixler - May 19, 2010 at 2:27 AM

    If this is still tied in the bottom of the 9th, who's going to be pitching for us? Personally I'd rather not see Capps.

  22. meixler - May 19, 2010 at 2:28 AM

    As soon as I typed that I knew I jinxed us. My bad. Sorry y'all.

  23. Sec3WithATuxedoCat - May 19, 2010 at 4:15 AM

    only if you have 162 cats every year. ******************Anonymous said…It's exactly like watching someone strangle your beloved cat in your living room. Slow, painful, certain.





As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 schedule (subject to change)...

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

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