Game #91 and back to business. Strasburg starts the 2nd half: Game Thread

It is back to the business of baseball, and the trade deadline closes in 16 days as the clock is ticking. Business 101 says as a true capitalist “bigger is better”. That can relate to the trade market where the key strategy in a finite market is to look to expand while also trying to block your competitors to entry in acquiring an unique asset. The Nationals might not get the two best trade chips in their areas of need which are Andrew Miller and Carlos Gonzalez, and if they do not, you drive up the price for your competition.

Our sources tell us Mike Rizzo is looking at several bullpen options and prefers a back of the bullpen arm who could work as a set-up man, and has closing experience like Andrew Miller, Alex Colome, and Ryan Madson. The Nationals’ manager Dusty Baker would like Aroldis Chapman who would be a closer which appears to be problematic on the surface as that job is currently filled by the Nationals’ closer Jonathan Papelbon.

On the outfield front, the Nationals are looking at outfielders who can play multiple positions as Mike Rizzo does not want to shift Bryce Harper to centerfield. We could not get any specific names on this list other than the one name that we keep hearing in Jay Bruce who is only a corner outfielder.

On to what we do know that tonight’s game will feature Stephen Strasburg against the lefty Francisco Liriano.

Here are the Nats stats against Liriano:

Here is Stephen Strasburg’s stats against the Pirates:

Washington Nationals and Pittsburgh Pirates
Stadium: Nationals Park, Washington, D.C.
1st Pitch: 7:05 pm EDT

Line-ups (subject to change without notice).  Murphy is not starting and here is the new lineup:

  1. Trea Turner 2B
  2. Michael Taylor CF
  3. Jayson Werth LF
  4. Bryce Harper RF
  5. Anthony Rendon 3B
  6. Wilson Ramos C
  7. Danny Espinosa SS
  8. Clint Robinson 1B
  9. Stephen Strasburg RHP

Daniel Murphy was scratched with what is being described by the Nationals as “general leg soreness”.

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