The Nationals flight back to the DC area was delayed last night by a few hours due to poor weather. The turnaround time will be quick as today’s game is an early afternoon start time at 1:05 pm EDT on this Memorial Day game. As the Nationals’ manager, this will be Dave Martinez‘s first foray into Orioles Park at Camden Yards where the disdain runs deep among many factions of the opposing fanbases. Since Buck Showalter arrived as the Orioles manager, he has seemed to always play the head-to-head games against the Nationals as if they were playoff games. Expect Dave Martinez to treat this game like business as usual.
This afternoon’s game will feature Gio Gonzalez for the Nationals and righty Alex Cobb for the Orioles. This will be the Nationals first opportunity to use the designated hitter this season which will allow Davey Martinez to get even more creative with his line-up. Lefties are batting .452 against Cobb this season and righties are batting .327. Cobb currently has a 7.32 ERA.
The Nationals are still carrying a 4-man bench and if Matt Adams is playing 1st base the bench is Mark Reynolds, Spencer Kieboom, Adrian Sanchez and Andrew Stevenson. Could general manager Mike Rizzo bring back Daniel Murphy and Brian Goodwin sooner than later? Stay tuned on this one.
For anyone clamoring for Wilmer Difo to go to the bench, just ponder this — when Wilmer Difo starts, the Washington Nationals record is 23 wins and 14 losses. When Difo has not started, the Nationals are 6 wins and 8 losses. Hopefully Daniel Murphy will have a greater positive impact, but do not forget what Wilmer Difo has done for this team in 2018.
At 3 pm today, all teams will pause for a moment of rememberance on this Memorial Day.
Washington Nationals vs. Baltimore Orioles
Stadium: Orioles Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore, Maryland
1st Pitch: 1:05 pm EDT
TV: MASN2; MLB App out-of-market
Nats Radio: 106.7 The Fan and via the MLB app
Line-ups subject to change without notice: