Aug 19, 2010, 2:15 PM EDT
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Nyjer Morgan and Wilson Ramos are in the Nats' lineup today at Turner Field.
Nyjer Morgan is back with the Nationals, activated off the 15-day disabled list this morning and hoping to pick up where he left off when he was sidelined. The center fielder was hitting .311 with a .366 on-base percentage and 10 stolen bases (two caught stealings) over his last 20 games.
This hasn't been announced yet, but I'm pretty sure Morgan will be taking Josh Willingham's roster spot, with Willingham going on the DL (presumably for the remainder of the season) with that nagging left knee injury that will likely require surgery in the coming days. It's an unfortunate and abrupt conclusion to what was shaping up as the best season of Willingham's career. (UPDATE AT 11:06 A.M. — Willingham has officially been placed on the 15-day DL with a medial meniscus tear in his left knee.)
Several other noteworthy items in advance of this game…
– Wilson Ramos makes his Nats debut, batting seventh and starting behind the plate.
– Adam Dunn gets a rare day off, perhaps because he's got bad career numbers against Derek Lowe (6-for-31, two walks, eight strikeouts). Michael Morse gets a rare start at first base in his place.
– With Dunn and Willingham out, Ryan Zimmerman (who last night was ejected for the first time in his career) bats cleanup. Needing a 3-hitter, Jim Riggleman is going with Roger Bernadina (first time Roger has hit there in his brief career). Bernadina also takes over in left field, which is where I suspect he'll play most of the time the rest of the way.
– Congrats to Wil and Yormarie Nieves, the proud parents of a baby girl. Maria Isabel Nieves was born yesterday at 5:28 p.m., and everyone is doing well. Wil should be rejoining the team in the next couple days.
I'm not in Atlanta for this series, but I may post some thoughts along the way as this game plays out. I will be in Philadelphia, however, so full coverage returns all weekend…
NATIONALS at BRAVES
Where: Turner Field
Gametime: 1:05 p.m.
Radio: WFED-1500 AM, WWFD-820 AM
Weather: Mostly cloudy, 84 degrees, Wind 8 mph out to RF.
CF Nyjer Morgan
SS Ian Desmond
LF Roger Bernadina
3B Ryan Zimmerman
COUNTDOWN TO OPENING DAY
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