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Nats vs. Astros – 3/16/13

Mar 16, 2013, 7:00 PM EDT

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Stephen Strasburg and Ryan Zimmerman each are in the Nats' lineup.

VIERA, Fla. — Let's see … Stephen Strasburg is on the mound. Ryan Zimmerman is at third base. The lineup is chock full of regulars. The game's on TV and will be played under the lights. Is it April at long last?

Sorry, it's still only March 16. But tonight's Grapefruit League game will be as close to a regular-season game as you're likely to see from the Nationals this spring. That includes Zimmerman in the field for the first time this spring. Look for him to be out at third base for about three or four innings, depending on how he feels and how quickly he can get two at-bats.

It also includes Strasburg both on the mound and at the plate. This is the first time this spring the Nats haven't used a DH, so the reigning NL Silver Slugger pitcher gets to take some hacks for the first time.

Plenty of updates to come, so please check back…

WASHINGTON NATIONALS vs. HOUSTON ASTROS
Where: Space Coast Stadium, Viera
Gametime: 6:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN
Radio: Astros radio via MLB Gameday Audio
Weather: Sunny, 71 degrees, Wind 8 mph in from LF

NATIONALS
CF Denard Span
RF Jayson Werth
LF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman

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  1. Positively Half St. - Mar 16, 2013 at 7:35 PM

    I am not trying to be mean, but I can't tell whether the Houston lineup is anywhere near what the opening day lineup will be like. I am guessing that the lack of Justin Maxwell means it isn't that close, but for the Astros the difference may not be significant.

  2. Gonat - Mar 16, 2013 at 7:38 PM

    Nats look like they are putting out their Opening Day roster.

  3. NCNatsie - Mar 16, 2013 at 7:47 PM

    Right you are, Gonat. The only question would be at catcher. Do you think the choice of Ramos for tonight has any implications for O.D?

  4. Section 222 - Mar 16, 2013 at 8:17 PM

    Haren is your 5th Starter not DetSee Mark's tweet: "Davey also reveals he plans to have Dan Haren as No. 4 starter and Ross Detwiler as No. 5."Oops. I'm a little surprised by this choice since the 4th starter will pitch the last game against the White Sox, and I thought maybe Davey would rather have Haren face the Braves. The Braves haven't seen him since May 16, 2010, and the only player in the lineup that day who is still a starter for the Braves is Jason Heyward. On the other hand, Haren faced the White Sox twice last year and had quality starts in both games. So maybe Davey wanted to line him up to face them. Then again, "John's my guy…."

  5. JayB - Mar 16, 2013 at 9:19 PM

    yea because Davey always tells the truth in the Press…..ask Lanan about that…..

  6. peric - Mar 16, 2013 at 9:22 PM

    1/2 Street? Ankiel over JMax? And who is Houston's manager again? And does he know both players? And who do you think he likes better?Easy answer there.

  7. peric - Mar 16, 2013 at 9:24 PM

    Detwiler is the #4 guy. Davey is probably showing some deference to the veteran by not sticking him in the #5 hole. And Detwiler is still young and has yet to throw 200 innings or even complete an entire season as a starter?So, it makes sense all things considered. If his performance warrants it Detwiler will get moved up when Davey decides its time to switch around the rotation.

  8. peric - Mar 16, 2013 at 9:26 PM

    yea because Davey always tells the truth in the Press…..ask Lanan about that…..Lannan ~= JD Martiin from the left side. He has value because he's a lefty but he's still AAAA. And that will be clearly seen soon enough.

  9. Traveler8 - Mar 16, 2013 at 9:29 PM

    Not seeing Jose Altuve in the lineup for the Astros tells me that they are not on their starting nine.

  10. Section 222 - Mar 16, 2013 at 9:40 PM

    You guys are hilarious. Do you actually think it matters who is #4 and who is #5? Or that it's a competition based on merit? Come on.

  11. MicheleS - Mar 16, 2013 at 9:45 PM

    Well, some good news for me, Tomorrow I will be live from Lakeland.. and I get the treat of seeing Gio pitch. See y'all tomorrow.. sprung for the MLB.tv for a month so I could watch some games while traveling…

  12. Drew - Mar 16, 2013 at 9:50 PM

    The Astros didn't also aren't starting big LF Chris Carter, who they picked up in the Oakland deal.I wonder if the Astros brought Freiman, the big second-string first baseman who homered against the Nats on Thursday.

  13. MicheleS - Mar 16, 2013 at 9:51 PM

    Scratch that.. I get Ross tomorrow instead.. Equally as happy!

  14. Drew - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:00 PM

    Enjoy Lakeland, MicheleS. Don't forget the sunscreen.

  15. baseballswami - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:22 PM

    Nice to see Rick Ankiel extending his career in Houston. He is a good guy and Bo will basically have another coach in the dugout. We outgrew him, but he has something to contribute to the Astros.

  16. Another_Sam - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:25 PM

    This game feels real.

  17. baseballswami - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:27 PM

    A_sam. And the pitchers are hitting now. Significant sea change.

  18. baseballswami - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:29 PM

    Zimmy can throw!!!!

  19. Joe Seamhead - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:29 PM

    This home plate ump is a pitcher's best pal. Ask Ankiel or Werth.

  20. Manassas Nats' Fan - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    I was going to say Ross is tomorrow.

  21. Joe Seamhead - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  22. Joe Seamhead - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    Zimm? Throw from 3rd? Looked pretty.

  23. baseballswami - Mar 16, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    Joe- it's a beautiful thing. Espi looked pretty sharp now too.

  24. Rabbit34 - Mar 16, 2013 at 11:12 PM

    Just amazing how this lineup had the best record in baseball. Now, with a little luck, this year………?

  25. NatsNut - Mar 16, 2013 at 11:18 PM

    Michele, don't forget to take the cookies with you tomorrow.

  26. MicheleS - Mar 16, 2013 at 11:21 PM

    Nats Nut.. had I known Ross was pitching I would have baked him some cookies..Good see Stras serve up a meatball to ank so he can make the team (it's the Astros, but still it's a team)

  27. baseballswami - Mar 16, 2013 at 11:33 PM

    Well, I guess Stras is stretched out now.

  28. Manassas Nats' Fan - Mar 16, 2013 at 11:41 PM

    Strasburg stretching out nicely.

  29. EmDash - Mar 16, 2013 at 11:57 PM

    Today's example of 'things they'll never happen outside of spring training:' Tyler Moore in as a pinch runner for Bryce Harper.

  30. EmDash - Mar 16, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    Oh, Astros. Man. No collision on that play, at least!

  31. Another_Sam - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:00 AM

    Ill take it.

  32. Candide - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:01 AM

    So the Nats are trailing 1-0 to what sounds like the AAAA Astros?Yikes…

  33. UnkyD - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:03 AM

    Not any more….. :)

  34. baseballswami - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:07 AM

    These hitters look a lot like Team USA .

  35. Theophilus T. S. - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:13 AM

    Anybody notice Mark DeRosa's hitting .400+ for Toronto?

  36. baseballswami - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:18 AM

    I did notice that DeRosa likes being north if the border.

  37. baseballswami - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    Storen have dead arm?

  38. EmDash - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:37 AM

    Oh, Drew. He just has bad spring trainings, right? Right?

  39. Drew - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:37 AM

    You're killing me, Smalls!

  40. baseballswami - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:39 AM

    He needs to announce his presence with authority.

  41. MicheleS - Mar 17, 2013 at 12:55 AM

    swammi… as long as Drew announces his presence with authority after 4/1, i am okay.

  42. NatsNut - Mar 17, 2013 at 1:01 AM

    Hi there, good Henry. Nice to see you again.

  43. TimDz - Mar 17, 2013 at 1:04 AM

    PFB, Henry….

  44. UnkyD - Mar 17, 2013 at 1:04 AM

    My Boy!!

  45. MicheleS - Mar 17, 2013 at 1:05 AM

    Henry looking good….

  46. phil dunton - Mar 17, 2013 at 1:16 AM

    Henry alway looks good when there's no pressure.

  47. phil dunton - Mar 17, 2013 at 1:16 AM

    Henry alway looks good when there's no pressure.

  48. MicheleS - Mar 17, 2013 at 1:28 AM

    phil… are you already sucking on lemons? It's not even May yet…. ;-)

  49. EmDash - Mar 17, 2013 at 2:12 AM

    Not a Henry fan, but credit where it's due – he kept his composure after the error and got out of it. Good to see. Hopefully it'll be good for his confidence.

Archives

FINAL NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
x-WASHINGTON 96 66 --
ATLANTA 79 83 17.0
NEW YORK 79 83 17.0
MIAMI 77 85 19.0
PHILADELPHIA 73 89 23.0

NL POSTSEASON SCHEDULE

NL WILD CARD GAME
WED: Giants at Pirates, 8:07 p.m. (ESPN)

NLDS
FRI: Game 1, Pirates at Nats, 12:07 p.m.,
OR Giants at Nats, 3:07 p.m. (FS1)
SAT: Game 2, PIT/SF at Nats, 5:37 p.m. (FS1)
MON: Game 3, Nats at PIT/SF, TBA (MLBN)
OCT. 7: Game 4, Nats at PIT/SF, TBA (FS1)*
OCT. 9: Game 5, PIT/SF at Nats, TBA (FS1)*
*if necessary

Mark joins Rob Carlin and Joe Orsulak every Thursday at 4 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet for a half-hour show on the Nats, Orioles and rest of MLB. Re-airs Thursdays at 11:30 p.m., Saturdays at 9 a.m. and Sundays at 11:30 a.m.

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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