Jul 22, 2012, 3:58 PM EST
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Nats try to salvage a series split and increase their NL East lead to 3 1/2 games.
What was the significance of last night's 5-2 win over the Braves? Well, instead of showing up at the park today in danger of getting swept and losing first place in the NL East for the first time in two months, the Nationals know they have an opportunity to salvage a split and get their lead back to 3 1/2 games, where it was when this series opened on Friday. Pretty big difference.
The Nationals will attempt to do that without Ian Desmond or Jesus Flores in their lineup. Desmond's oblique strain acted up again during last night's game, so he's getting a rest. For now, the team doesn't believe the injury is getting worse or that a DL stint is going to become a possibility — "I don't really want to go there," Davey Johnson said this morning. Flores, meanwhile, still is bothered by a stiff back, so Sandy Leon gets another start behind the plate.
Bryce Harper, on the other hand, is back in the lineup, fighting through a bruised left ankle after fouling a bunt off himself during yesterday's opener. He certainly looked fine coming off the bench during last night's win.
The skies appear to actually be clearing up after a long weekend of rain and gray. Plenty of updates to come, so please check back…
ATLANTA BRAVES at WASHINGTON NATIONALS (Game 2)
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 1:35 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, Ch. 50, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 185
Weather: Mostly cloudy, 80 degrees, Wind 6 mph RF to LF
2B Steve Lombardozzi
RF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
LF Michael Morse
FINAL NL EAST STANDINGS
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 2016 promo schedule includes figurine of Werth and his dog
- NL East: Mets closer permanently banned by MLB for PEDs
- Bryce Harper: 'I'm a big fan of what Kirk Cousins did this year'
- NL East: Mets' ace says he's open to contract extension
- Bryce Harper on potential for $400M contract: 'Don't sell me short'
- Why does free agent Ian Desmond still remain unsigned?
- Nationals to give out Bryce Harper Chia Pets in 2016
- 2016 Nats roster outlook: Is Gott ready for a late-innings role?
- 2016 Nats roster outlook: Shawn Kelley adds needed depth to bullpen
- 2016 MLB roster outlook: Kansas City Royals