After a day off to ponder an ugly season opening series against the Atlanta Braves, the Washington Nationals (1-2) are taking their talents (a term will will use loosely for now) to South Beach to face the Florida Marlins (1-2) tonight in the first of a three game set, part of a six game road trip that will also see the Nats face the NY Mets at Citi Field.
Jason Marquis, or as I like to call him The Game Changer, will take the mound for the hometown nine in his first start of the year. Marquis had a brutal start to his 2010 campaign with the Nats, getting blasted in three April starts before hitting the disabled list for a large portion of last year's campaign. He finished the season with an abysmal 2-9 record and a career-worst 6.60 ERA.
Marquis will face off against Marlins righthander Anibal Sanchez. In his young career, Sanchez has had much success agains the Nats, compiling a 5-0 record with a 2.28 ERA in 13 starts, including a 2-0 mark and minuscule 1.05 ERA last year against Washington.
Via @washingtonats, your Nationals lineup tonight:
Looks like skipper Jim Riggleman is batting Jerry Hairston, Jr. leadoff instead of Ian Desmond, he of the 0-13 start to the season, with only one run scored and zero walks. A night off might help Desmond, but he is not alone in his offensive woes. Cleanup hitter Adam LaRoche might want to stop leaving multiple guys on base each game and the Rick Ankiel/Mike Morse outfield duo need to hit better than .111 each.