Game #62 Max Scherzer gets the Sunday start!

“WE SEE A WIN AHEAD” is the new sign

The Nationals players all got to sleep-in today after their Dream Foundation Gala last night, and Trea Turner slept like a baby on his new HIBR martress. The Nats’ starting shortstop finally gets his much needed day-off today. Trea probably should have had the walk-off bunt yesterday, but we know how that ended with Wilmer Difo. Trea had appeared in every game since April 21st. Ryan Zimmerman, as expected, will get today off to rest his lower back which he injured a few days ago. The wait and see on Zimmerman is whether or not he plays tomorrow given his statement:

“I can’t see me not playing on Monday,” Ryan Zimmerman said.

We all knew Ryan Zimmerman would need his rest days. What we hoped he would avoid were injury days as he has credited his good health for his MVP-type production this season.

The Nationals training staff were not able to give Koda Glover any relief from his back pain which led to him being placed on the 10-day DL today while activating Joe Blanton from the DL to take Glover’s place in the bullpen.

The Nationals bullpen roster is currently Blanton, Jacob Turner, Shawn Kelley, Matt Albers, Blake Treinen, Enny Romero and Oliver Perez. Everyone will be available today except for Matt Albers who was used for 2 innings and 29 pitches yesterday.

It is anyone’s guess who is the closer for today, tomorrow, and the next 8 days after that leading to the Nationals next day off on June 22nd. It is also possible that Sammy Solis will be returning soon from the DL which will lead to some speculation of who stays and who goes then and when Glover is ready to return.

A look ahead on the Nationals schedule is three games with the Atlanta Braves in Nats Park then a 4-game extended weekend series with the NY Mets in CitiField.

For today’s game, it is Max Scherzer against the Texas Rangers. The Rangers are starting Austin Bibens-Dirkx who was a Washington Nationals farmhand back in 2012 with the Harrisburg Senators and Syracuse Chiefs for a few months. Bibens-Dirkx was a teammate with many of the Nats in Spring Training in 2012 and in the Minor Leagues like Brian Goodwin and Tanner Roark. This will be Bibens-Dirkx second start of the season, and in his first start the right-hander allowed 3-runs over 4 2/3 innings against Tampa Bay.

Of note, Max Scherzer is 5 strikeouts away from 2000 K’s. Will they give him a 2000 K St. sign? Expect that to occur in the 3rd or 4th inning, the 2,oooth strikeout, not the sign.

Texas Rangers at Washington Nationals
Stadium: Nationals Park, South Capitol St. SE, Washington, DC
1st Pitch:  4:05 pm EDT
TV: MASN2, FOX Southwest, MLB.TV
Nats Radio: 106.7 FM The Fan; SiriusXM® XM 182  Sirius 214 (Internet 869)

Line-ups  (subject to change without notice):

  1. Brian Goodwin LF
  2. Bryce Harper RF
  3. Daniel Murphy 2B
  4. Anthony Rendon 3B
  5. Adam Lind 1B
  6. Matt Wieters C
  7. Stephen Drew SS
  8. Michael Taylor CF
  9. Max Scherzer RHP

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