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Nats vs. Marlins – 2/24/13

Feb 24, 2013, 1:52 PM EDT

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Space Coast Stadium hosts its first game of the spring.

VIERA, Fla. — With yesterday's Grapefruit League opener behind them, the Nationals get to host their first game of the spring this afternoon, with another familiar NL East foe as the opponent. Familiar, at least, in name only. This year's Marlins won't resemble in any way last year's Marlins, given the manner in which owner Jeffrey Loria and GM Larry Beinfest blew up the roster following a disastrous 2012.

One of the good, young arms Miami picked up during its fire sale is right-hander Henderson Alvarez, formerly of the Blue Jays. Alvarez will be on the mound today, facing a Nationals lineup with some similarities to yesterday's group, but with a few key changes. Danny Espinosa, Kurt Suzuki and Steve Lombardozzi each get their first start of the spring. So does Anthony Rendon, the organization's top prospect, who will start at third base and bat second.

Jordan Zimmermann gets the ball from Davey Johnson, looking to get his spring off on a strong note. The right-hander has spent much of the last two weeks working on his changeup, which he wants to make a bigger part of his arsenal this season. We'll see if he's able to apply it in a game situation today.

No TV coverage of this one, but Charlie Slowes and Dave Jageler are here and will have the game on the radio. And, of course, I'll have plenty of updates and analysis throughout, so please check back often…

WASHINGTON NATIONALS vs. MIAMI MARLINS
Where: Space Coast Stadium, Viera
Gametime: 1:05 p.m. EST
TV: None
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM)
Weather: Partly cloudy, 80 degrees, Wind 5 mph out to LF

NATIONALS
CF Denard Span
3B Anthony Rendon
LF Bryce Harper
RF Tyler Moore

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112 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. NatsJack in Florida - Feb 24, 2013 at 1:59 PM

    I'll be in my seats in section 111, row 3, seat 8.

  2. Positively Half St. - Feb 24, 2013 at 2:08 PM

    NatsJack-I look forward to your pictures later today.

  3. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 2:17 PM

    Danny playing for the first time…Lombo started yesterday…..Njack…..please post often about Danny's approach and long loopy lefty swing with a hole you could throw a toaster through (braking balls down and in).Please, please lets hope he has learned something and not been empowered by Davey's endless support for 200k's.

  4. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    Njack another question please…Strass start and comments afterwards pointed to exactly why I an not in favor of WBC participation by Nats Pitchers. Strass was throwing almost only fastballs and is clearly not anywhere near ready to pitch in meaningful games. Gio and Ross are going to have to try to pitch like it is April and May in early March. That is stupid to do in my view. I recall you were all for it for Ross….how is this going to make sense for the Nats?

  5. sjm308 - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:11 PM

    Can anyone here play or is this the eeyore & Natsjack hour? Eeyore, have you thought that maybe Gio and Ross are excited to represent their country and that this is just a little bit of an honor? Have you thought that maybe Greg Maddux and Joe Torre know a little about what they are doing and would not want a reputation of ruining a pitchers season? Have you thought that maybe, just maybe all the pitchers will be in the same situation and will not pitch any differently? Just wondering if you think or just complain.

  6. sjm308 - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:12 PM

    Natsjack – if I am not on twitter I am guessing I will not be able to see your pictures. Correct?

  7. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:17 PM

    sjm, you need not be a member of twitter to see what someone else posts, so you should be ok.

  8. sjm308 - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:18 PM

    Thanks natsjim but where do I go to look?

  9. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:20 PM

    https://twitter.com/NatsJackinFlTry that sjm…

  10. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:21 PM

    yes I have thought about all that….and I remain focused on the Nats and who is paying the bills here. Nats goal is the winning WS. Nats are paying with our help millions of dollars to accomplish that. Gio and Ross's individual goals and wants mean nothing. Only Team goals should be on the table and I see no benefit for Nats in WBC participation. As for Torre and Maddux….come on get you head out of the sand. Drew S and Danny E examples are only the most recent of endless examples of players not disclosing injuries and trying to hard for personal gain over team. You think Ross is going to tell Maddux he is not ready to throw his a breaking ball, change up, breaking ball, change up sequence to a tough MLB hitter who has been playing winter ball and Caribbean WS last month in early March? Stop please making it about individuals and think Team.

  11. Steve Hayes - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:25 PM

    I really want to see Rendon cut loose and show us he hitter that he is. seems that everytime I watch him, he never hits — tear it up today, Anthony.Lombo vs. Espinosa. Is there really a true contest here? I mean, if Lombo has a good spring and Espi doesn't, will Davey really make Espi the bench player Lombo was last year?

  12. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    nope he will not and that is a problem. What he should do is send Danny to AAA to prove he can be coached and that he is healthy. If not then surgery, rehab and AAA next year.

  13. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:33 PM

    Steve, I don't think there's a true spring training competition at 2b – Danny's the opening day starter barring any injury complications. The question is how long Davey sticks with him if he continues to perform as he did last year – if he's on pace for another 200 K season I would hope at some point Davey would sit him down, but don't know if he will.

  14. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:42 PM

    Agreed on Rendon…He has not had 400 AB's in like EVER. Sure he has talent….a lot of talent but time is wasting. He needs to play everyday this spring somewhere….DH on the back fields and get 10 AB's a day…..he is very rusty.

  15. horsey - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:55 PM

    Anyone else notice that Ghost of Steve M. has not been running his mouth this weekend while someone else has? Doctor JayB and Mister Hyde, perhaps?

  16. NatsJack in Florida - Feb 24, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    I saw 3 BP sessions with Espi. He used the leg kick from the right side but not from the left side. Consentrated on driving the ball the opposite way from the left side.

  17. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 4:04 PM

    I like that Bryce is hitting 3rd again, I interpret that to mean Davey's favoring the Span-Werth-Harp-Zimm top of the order that makes the most sense even if Bryce said he wants to continue hitting 2nd.

  18. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 4:08 PM

    good news….Njack…not like he did not know what to do or how to do it….it is more like is he willing to do it in the game. His ego takes over and he thinks of HRs instead of team.

  19. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 4:09 PM

    Ghost is way smarter than I am but thanks for the thought :)

  20. sjm308 - Feb 24, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    Just for the record, I think you both are pretty smart, and we will just disagree about the WBC. If JB had his way the US team would be made up of minor league talent.

  21. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 4:46 PM

    correct…it means nothing

  22. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 4:59 PM

    what I would do is pick a team of MiLB single A or lower and pay for them to play in a winter league season and them let them be the WBC team.They need and want the money, they are not hurting themselves because they are ready at the right time. They function as a team and they are not hurting their MLB Teams in 2013

  23. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 5:00 PM

    They would win plenty and who cares anyway

  24. Teddy Rochlis - Feb 24, 2013 at 5:44 PM

    There is an upside for them to pitch in the WBC, which is that by the time beggining of the season actually starts, they should be going full steam ahead and not have to ease into it and struggle the first couple of starts. Maybe what davey does to compensate the extra starts in the WBC is to pitch the two for a pitch limit of ~100 for the month of April, just my thought. So for the people that are saying that it only hurts the nationals i think you are wrong. Go ahead and let the arguement insue

  25. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:01 PM

    Ghost said last year he doesn't normally post on weekends. I am not ready to read anything sinister into his absence–yet. :)

  26. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:03 PM

    Charlie and Dave are ON THE RADIO.. Their season of silence is over. JZ with a fastball for called strike 1!!!

  27. WT YL - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:05 PM

    Trying to listen online their playing the sports junks…. wth!

  28. Doc - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:12 PM

    Mark, please let us know if JZim is throwing his newer version of the developing change.Thanks!

  29. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:13 PM

    WT YL, I think you need the MLB At-Bat app. They cut off the MLB stuff for the online apps like Tune-in. At least, they did last year.

  30. waddu eye no - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:21 PM

    MmmmmmCharlue & dave. Best music on the radio

  31. Ghost Of Steve M. - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:28 PM

    NatsLady, thanks, you are correct. I have said before I try not to post on weekends or evenings. I also don't like to post in-game because emotion causes knee-jerk posts.JayB, nice compliment and we all know you have had several insightful posts.Talk to you all tomorrow.

  32. BigCat - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:47 PM

    NatsJack…..let me know how Rendon looks

  33. BigCat - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:48 PM

    As you know, Im not his biggest fan

  34. Scott Margenau - Feb 24, 2013 at 6:48 PM

    GYFNG

  35. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:00 PM

    Njack how was that Danny ground out to second a good out or yet just another example of Danny trying to pull everything and rolling over an outside pitch instead of hitting it to Left?

  36. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:01 PM

    Ghost….I think your policy is smart…wish I could follow it. Thanks as well.

  37. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:04 PM

    Dave and Charlie talking about "Take on Me" – hope they make it the 7th-inning stretch music as suggested by several, would be a great new tradition and tribute to the Beast.

  38. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:06 PM

    and from the other point of view…I wish there were no such thing as walk up songs. 7th inning stretch can stay take me out to the ball game and then play the game.

  39. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:15 PM

    Given the choice I'd be happy if the walk-up music was banned altogether, but since that's not going to happen and given the popularity of the "Take on Me" sing alongs last year I think it's fitting. Plus, doing it during the stretch means it wouldn't actually interrupt gameplay…

  40. Steady Eddie - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:19 PM

    Not that it really matters much, but does anyone have a clue what's going on with the game? Gameday shows the bottom of the 4th with Harper 1B, Moore and Tracy @K, then Desmond 1B and Espinosa 1B. Yet Gameday shows 2 outs, score still 1-0 Fish, and Espinosa on first. ?????

  41. MicheleS - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:22 PM

    Eddie.. Rain delay right now

  42. Steady Eddie - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:24 PM

    I know they're in a rain delay, but that doesn't add up. Either Desmond's really still up and Gameday fantacized his and Danny's singles, or there at least 2 runners on and a run in. Of course, Gameday is back to not showing balls, and being either way ahead or way behind the game action, so who knows?

  43. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:24 PM

    Can't seem to get 106.7 to live stream on the computer right now. Have to search the garage for a radio I guess.

  44. Mark Zuckerman - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:27 PM

    Steady Eddie: There's one out, Harper on first base, and Tracy at the plate. Desmond's on deck.

  45. Gonat - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:28 PM

    baseballswami, yep, no streaming as its blacked out. Either the MLB-App which you have to pay for or regular tune-in radio!

  46. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:28 PM

    swami, are you using MLB or the 106.7 site? You need the MLB app, because they don't stream live games on their site.

  47. Steady Eddie - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:29 PM

    Thanks, Mark! That makes a lot more sense. Kind of bizarre Gameday sort of making up its own game — even to the point of showing the Nats with six hits and the Desi and Danny "singles" listed in the box score.Parallel universe stuff in a very trivial way.

  48. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:33 PM

    I am re-watching yesterday's game, with the idea of grading the lefties. So far I have Bray at an F, and Abad at a C. Abad didn't give up any runs, but he did walk 2 guys (including a left-handed batter and an AAA-guy). Then my laptop overheated, so I have to wait a few minutes… How would you all grade Bray, Abad, and Erik Davis?

  49. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:44 PM

    Anybody else lose the wjfk audio on the mlb app?

  50. SonnyG10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    NL, I agree with your grades on Bray and Abad. I thought Erik Davis was really good.I liked Bill Bray when he was with the Nationals the last time, but was really disappointed in what I saw yesterday.

  51. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    I guess it's spring training for them too, the Miami WAXY feed is fine.

  52. SonnyG10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    Yes, NatsJim, I just noticed it is gone.

  53. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    I am using the 106.7 site , which should not be subject to blackout – it's just not working. NatsJim seems to find that problem also. Currently listening to an actual radio, typing on the laptop and watching a nats classic muted on the tv. Elecrtonic overload.This game starting back up anytime soon?

  54. SonnyG10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:48 PM

    I just got mlb.com back.

  55. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:50 PM

    Agreed that Bray looked awful yesterday.

  56. SonnyG10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    swami, I could not get it on the 106.7 site either. Oops, I just lost mlb.com again.

  57. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    Thanks for confirming guys – I'm still down on the mlb app, listening to the fish feed…

  58. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    Thanks, Sonny. I'm planning on a post evaluating the lefties, but I suppose they could call today's game and just go home. Also am looking at Clip as a "LOOGY." Might not be a bad idea, given how well he does against them, his tendency to have high pitch counts in his innings, and the need to be careful of his shoulder and his exhaustion. Not the worst thing if he came in to get a lefty out to start or end an inning. Boy, did he have a great June last year, and a pretty good August.

  59. Gonat - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:55 PM

    You can not use the 106.7 website to listen to Nats broadcasts as it is blacked out and all you will get is their alternative broadcasting.

  60. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:56 PM

    Just looked at the radar for Viera. This storm is about done, but there is another behind it… Could be enough window to finish the game.

  61. SonnyG10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:57 PM

    Gripe. Now I can't get the Miami or the Nats feed on mlb

  62. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    Sonny, they may not be saying anything. Last year the announcers would cut back to the local station if it was a long enough delay. I mean, there is a limit to the chatter you can dream up.

  63. Anna Peregrina - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:00 PM

    I'm getting Dave and Charlie, but not directly from Gameday, I think from the "listen" link on the Nats main page.

  64. SonnyG10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:00 PM

    Thanks NL. I guess I'll just try to get some work done while I'm waiting to hear something.

  65. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:00 PM

    Just came back on both mlb.tv website and the mlb ios app.

  66. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:03 PM

    Swami, did Dave and Charlie ever throw it back to the studio while you were listening on the actual radio? They were taking callers when the sound cut, so I don't think it was a planned shutdown.Oh well, glad they pulled Bryce after the delay.

  67. SonnyG10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    Thanks Anna, I'm getting Charlie and Dave from the Nats web site now also.

  68. Gonat - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:07 PM

    Curtis Granderson fractured his forearm. Out 2 to 3 months.

  69. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:09 PM

    Ha, it's like a split squad, they took out everyone except Rendon for the 2nd half of the game…

  70. Gonat - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:11 PM

    NatsLady, have you seen tomorrow's starting lineup? It looks like what you have now.

  71. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:12 PM

    Gonat? Sorry, didn't understand your remark. No, I haven't seen tomorrow's lineup, is it posted somewhere?

  72. natsfan1a - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:14 PM

    NL, you're going to grade them after a few innings in a ST game?

  73. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    1A, it's not a final grade… just a grade on this "test." Davey, famously, doesn't audition guys. I'm planning to update my spreadsheet after each appearance.

  74. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:17 PM

    Gameday hasn't noticed that the game resumed.

  75. Gonat - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:19 PM

    Rendon!!!!

  76. SonnyG10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    Way to go Rendon!!!!

  77. natsfan1a - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    It will have a Rendon surprise when it does update. :-)

  78. SonnyG10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:21 PM

    Downtown Brown!!!

  79. NatsJim - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:21 PM

    Good for Rendon.

  80. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:21 PM

    Charlie and Dave took callers- I found a radio. Looking at the Nats classic vs the O's from 2 years ago- Ross looks like he was 10, Stammen, 12. Rendon with the power!!! Bad news from NY. That team is just beat up. Sounds like our reserves want to play ball!!

  81. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:25 PM

    If Zach Walter can field like this, we won't need Cesar Isturiz again… :)

  82. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:25 PM

    What ever happened to Shairon Martis?

  83. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:28 PM

    Boy, I hope we get videos of some of these plays eventually. I wanna see the unassisted DP by Marrero! You think these guys wanna be on the team this year or not?

  84. Anna Peregrina - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:29 PM

    Gameday is being amazingly useless.

  85. Gonat - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:30 PM

    I think Martis is pitching for the Dutch team in the WBC

  86. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:31 PM

    Jonathan Albaladejo — that's the guy we traded for Clip, right? Didn't know he was still around.

  87. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    NL – I was just thinking the same thing!!! Marrero has changed his body, his look, his intensity level. I don't mind "watching" the younger guys in ST. They are so motivated. I also hope there is video later.

  88. Gonat - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:54 PM

    Nice quotes from Jordan Zimmermann:"I thought it went well. I threw strikes and was attacking the hitters. I mixed in a few changeups which were mostly good ones. I'm happy with the first outing…just going out there and attacking and throwing strikes. I threw a few that were on the corner that I thought could've gone either way, but for the most part, I was getting groundballs, getting early contact, and that's what I was trying to do."

  89. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:56 PM

    This guy Accardo, he is for Syracuse, right? (And for working in spring training games) of which there are WAY too many!

  90. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:00 PM

    I think maybe we need a post introducing us to some of these mystery guys and giving us an idea where theyigjt end up. I need a program.

  91. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:01 PM

    *they might* end up.

  92. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:04 PM

    swami, I posted yesterday on the pitchers. Here is that post. Also, federalbaseball did a post on the on-roster invitees (pitchers and catchers.)http://ladyandthenats.blogspot.com/2013/02/spring-training-game-1-pitchers.htmlhttp://www.federalbaseball.com/2013/2/14/3984958/washington-nationals-spring-training-2013-pitchers-and-catchers-non-roster-invitees

  93. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:05 PM

    Sorry, I mean, their post is on the NON-Roster invitees (pitchers and catchers).

  94. Coach Mac - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:06 PM

    Strange that Davey would wait until so late in the game to use Storen

  95. Corky - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:10 PM

    I don't get the criticism of Espi on here. Espi was near the top of MLB in WAR for a second baseman last year. Even WITH the strikeouts. An out is an out; we do not need to obsess over how the out is made.

  96. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    Corky, I'm with you, and I've said the same many times. You would think from the comments here that Espy hit .197 and was a terrible fielder. He's one of my favs and I'm rooting for him.Storen in and gives up a single to the first batter.

  97. JayB - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:18 PM

    Out is not an out…..WAR is not a stat that wins Playoff games. It is OK but like any other stat is has it limitations.

  98. Manassas Nats' Fan - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:27 PM

    on to the 10th

  99. natsfan1a - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:29 PM

    My cat says, "Forget extra innings – I can haz dinner now?"

  100. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:41 PM

    These guys are trying to win this game. Awesome Natitude.

  101. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:44 PM

    I know it's meaningless, but it doesn't bother me at all that Atlanta and St. Louis both lost today…

  102. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:49 PM

    We just can't help ourselves. Philly lost to the Astros yesterday :). Go, Bo!!

  103. NatsLady - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:54 PM

    Bo called for a double steal yesterday and it worked! It made me smile.

  104. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:57 PM

    Our game is televised tomorrow? Masn showing Orioles on the guide.

  105. natsfan1a - Feb 24, 2013 at 9:59 PM

    MLB Network, Swami.

  106. Rabbit34 - Feb 24, 2013 at 10:05 PM

    Storen is probably the one who needs professional help after blowing a save on Feb 24.

  107. sjb - Feb 24, 2013 at 10:06 PM

    Martis was with the Pirates organization in 2011, then was purchased by the Twins last June, not making either big club (though he will be on the Netherlands WBC team along with the Shark!)Albaledejo was picked up by the Dbacks last year and pitched three innings for them before being let go this fall and being picked up by the Marlins

  108. baseballswami - Feb 24, 2013 at 10:14 PM

    Thanks for the tv info. Have found the schedule and bookmarked it. We are going to have to follow them around a bit.

  109. Rabbit34 - Feb 24, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    Nats are on TV tomorrow.

  110. NatsJim - Feb 25, 2013 at 12:40 AM

    An out is most certainly *not* an out… all outs are not created equal. Would anyone seriously suggest that a strikeout is the equivalent of a warning track flyball with one out and a runner on 3rd? The equivalent of a grounder to first with no outs and a runner on 2nd? Really??

  111. peric - Feb 25, 2013 at 4:40 AM

    The conspiracy theorists are out I see … now JayB is Ghost? Sheesh.A lot of spring baseball to be played and a lot could happen between now and the opener and between the opener and the beginning of June.

  112. peric - Feb 25, 2013 at 4:42 AM

    Finally JayB find someone on the Nats who hit 37 doubles last year? Last I looked LaRoche didn't. Neither did Morse. Nor did Zim or Desmond. Bryce didn't even come close.Who hit 37 doubles? Danny Espinosa while playing gold glove caliber second base and shortstop.

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 57 45 --
ATLANTA 57 48 1.5
MIAMI 51 53 7.0
NEW YORK 50 55 8.5
PHILADELPHIA 46 59 12.5
Through Sunday's games

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MON: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
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FRI: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
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