Mar 24, 2011, 8:37 PM EDT
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Jordan Zimmermann faces the Tigers tonight at Joker Marchant Stadium.
LAKELAND, Fla. — Plenty of pregame news here this evening. I'll go into more detail on all this in some separate postings, but here's the quick rundown…
— Jayson Werth is hitting second tonight, and Jim Riggleman said that's going to continue to be the case entering the season. Werth will bat second, with Ryan Zimmerman third, Adam LaRoche fourth and Michael Morse fifth. Leadoff remains a question mark, though you've got to believe it's either going to be Nyjer Morgan or Ian Desmond.
— The team still hasn't settled on the order of the rotation to open the year, but the only decision left is whether John Lannan or Jordan Zimmermann starts Game 2 after Livan Hernandez. The other guy will start Game 3, with Jason Marquis fourth and Tom Gorzelanny fifth. All five starters will make the Opening Day roster, though it hasn't been decided if Gorzelanny will take his first turn in the rotation or pitch out of the bullpen for the first week.
— Henry Rodriguez, who hasn't pitched in a game in a week, indeed does have a physical ailment: neck spasms. He was treated by a doctor and should be able to throw a bullpen session tomorrow, but the chance of him getting enough work in by Opening Day is remote. Sounds like he'll start the year on the DL.
— Chad Gaudin will begin pitching out of the bullpen this week, and Riggleman all but said he'll make the club as a long reliever. Assuming Rodriguez and Elvin Ramirez land on the DL, that would leave one final bullpen spot for either Collin Balester or Rule 5 pick Brian Broderick.
Plenty of game updates to come here, and more details on all that other news to come in separate posts…
NATIONALS at TIGERS
Where: Joker Marchant Stadium, Lakeland
Gametime: 6:05 p.m.
TV: MLB Network (tape delayed at 8 p.m.)
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM)
Weather: Mostly sunny, 81 degrees, Wind 13 mph LF to RF
DH Nyjer Morgan
RF Jayson Werth
1B Adam LaRoche
LF Michael Morse
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