Apr 21, 2012, 3:21 PM EDT
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Stephen Strasburg makes his fourth start of the season today, facing the Marlins.
The Nationals own the second-best record in the National League. They lead the NL East. They've gone 7-2 on their first homestand of the season. And today they'll have Chad Tracy hitting cleanup.
Wait, what? Chad Tracy hitting cleanup? Yes, believe it. Davey Johnson has been wanting to give the veteran a start at some point, but he really only plays first or third base. So the manager is giving Adam LaRoche a breather this afternoon and using Tracy in his place. (FYI: Ryan Zimmerman is expected to get tomorrow's series finale off, and Tracy could get another start in his place, unless Davey decides to go with Steve Lombardozzi.)
The Nationals certainly hope they don't need a ton of offense today, not with Stephen Strasburg on the mound. This actually will be Strasburg's fifth career start against the Marlins. He hasn't faced any other club more than twice.
It's a beautiful Saturday afternoon for baseball … for now. There's a big storm approaching from the south, but it's not expected to hit us until late in the afternoon. So we should be good today. Tomorrow will be another story. Plenty of updates to come…
MIAMI MARLINS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 1:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WNEW (1580 AM), XM 183
Weather: Storms late, 75 degrees, Wind 10 mph out to LF
SS Ian Desmond
2B Danny Espinosa
Ryan ZimmermanMark DeRosa
1B Chad Tracy
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.
Follow us on Twitter
- Nats and Marlins starters meet in tune-up
- Uggla hoping for starting job, not bench role with Nats
- AL East team scouting Phillies' Jonathan Papelbon
- Report: Nats making lefty relievers available for trade
- Strasburg labors in return from ankle sprain
- Former Nats OF released by Texas Rangers; Ohlendorf to Triple-A
- Nats announce season-opening rotation order
- Zimmerman expects to return in 2-3 days
- Strasburg returns to mound as Nats face Mets
- Storen returns to mound after 2-week absence