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Nationals Vs. Astros Preview: Stephen Strasburg To Start Series Opener Against Houston

The Washington Nationals start a four-game series with the Houston Astros on Monday night. Can ace Stephen Strasburg continue his strong start against a struggling Astros team?

Apr. 11, 2012; Flushing, NY, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg (37) pitches during the second inning against the New York Mets at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE
Apr. 11, 2012; Flushing, NY, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg (37) pitches during the second inning against the New York Mets at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE

The Washington Nationals had their five game winning streak snapped by the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday, losing 8-5 in 11 innings. The Nationals begin a four-game series with the Houston Astros at Nationals Park on Monday night with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

Stephen Strasburg will take the mound for his third start of the season. He has allowed only one run in 13 innings pitched to start the season and has an ERA of 0.69. He will be matched up against Houston pitcher Kyle Weiland who is 0-1 with a 7.20 ERA after allowing four runs on eight hits with two home runs over five innings against the Atlanta Braves.

On the offensive side, the Nationals have had great early contributions from Ian Desmond, Jayson Werth and Adam LaRoche. Werth has gone 14 for 30 during a current seven game hitting streak. LaRoche is currently hitting .341 while Desmond is hitting .354 to start the season off.

The game will be broadcast on MASN with radio coverage on 106.7 The Fan FM and 1580 AM WFHS.

For More on this series check out the SBNation Nationals blog Federal Baseball. For more information on the team in the other clubhouse, check out the Astros blog The Crawfish Boxes. For more news and notes from around Major League Baseball, check out the MLB Hub on SBNation.com.