Sep 16, 2010, 1:56 PM EDT
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Could John Lannan get a third consecutive Opening Day start?
Major League Baseball unveiled its 2011 schedule the other night, and once you got over the weirdness of a baseball season starting on a Thursday, you started wondering about other stuff.
Like: Who in the world is going be the Nationals' Opening Day starter?
This franchise doesn't exactly have an illustrious list of Game 1 hurlers. Livan Hernandez got the honors in 2005 and 2006. John Patterson did it in 2007. Odalis Perez(?!) threw the first pitch in Nationals Park history in 2008. And John Lannan took the ball each of the last two seasons.
For the most part, their counterparts were big-name, veteran starters worthy of such an assignment. Guys like Tom Glavine (2006, Mets), Tim Hudson (2008, Braves) and Roy Halladay (2010, Phillies). Jon Lieber (2005, Phillies) maybe doesn't rank with those three, but he was a solid starting pitcher for a long time. Dontrelle Willis (2007, Marlins) has seen his career fall to pieces, but at the time he owned a career 58-37 record. And Ricky Nolasco (2009, Marlins) may not be a household name, but he was coming off a 15-win season.
Point is, every Opening Day in Nats history has featured a pitching matchup that favored the opposition.
Ah, but that will finally change on March 31, 2011, because while presumptive Braves ace Tim Hudson may be a three-time All-Star,Read more »
COUNTDOWN TO OPENING DAY
ON THE RADIO
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.
*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.
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