Oct 11, 2010, 10:30 PM EDT
File photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Derek Lowe faces Madison Bumgarner and tries to keep the Braves' season alive.
Let's answer everyone's biggest question first: No, Brooks Conrad is not in the Braves' lineup tonight. And really, after last night's three-error performance, how could Bobby Cox put Conrad back out there? So Omar Infante moves back to second base and Troy Glaus comes off the bench to play third base. The only problem: While Glaus has 1,337 games of experience at third, he's been there only nine combined times the last two seasons. Not exactly a huge upgrade defensively.
In order to stave off elimination and force a Game 5 Wednesday night in San Francisco, Atlanta will have to play solid defense while also getting a strong start from Derek Lowe, who returns on three days' rest. Lowe has done this five times previously (going 3-1 with a 4.40 ERA) so he's comfortable with the challenge. Whether he delivers, we'll have to wait and see.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy would have brought Tim Lincecum back on short rest had his team trailed the series. But since San Francisco leads 2-1, Bochy instead is going with rookie left-hander Madison Bumgarner, who isn't too shabby himself (1.18 ERA over his last six starts). And if the Braves pull this one out, the Giants will still have Lincecum ready to go for the decisive Game 5…
CF Andres Torres
2B Freddy Sanchez
1B Aubrey Huff
C Buster Posey
NL EAST STANDINGS
Through Monday's games
NL PLAYOFFS STANDINGS
y-Clinched playoff berth
Through Monday's games
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
THU: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
FRI: Marlins at Nats (DH), 1:05 p.m., 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Marlins at Nats, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Marlins at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
(End of regular season)
Full season schedule
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 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: 1:30 p.m., 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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