When the Washington Nationals had their Spring Training home in Viera, they were about an hour away by bus to Champion Field in Disney to play the Braves. The teams played each other several times each spring. With the Nationals and Astros move to West Palm Beach, it is the Braves who are far from all teams except for the Tigers in Lakelands, Florida which led the Braves to seek their own relocation. The Braves secured a new stadium deal in Sarasota, however, the complex was not ready for this season so the Braves extended their lease on the Disney grounds for one more season.
The roundtrip is a 326 mile bus drive, and a lengthy 2 1/2 hours each way from FITTEAM to Champion Field. Today’s starting pitcher for the Nats, Patrick Corbin, decided to drive up yesterday on his own to avoid the early morning bus ride that is set to leave at 7:15 AM from the FITTEAM complex in West Palm Beach.
The Braves will start their lefty, Max Fried, who has faced the Nats before. The Nats will send a road crew of mostly volunteer veteran players and a lot of minor leaguers. This will be Corbin’s first start for the Nationals, and do not expect him to show his full arsenal to the rival Braves rather Corbin will be working on pitches while getting his work in to build up his stamina. His pitch count will be set around 40 pitches and most likely two innings of work.
For the Nationals, they had their first setback in camp as the oft-injured Koda Glover felt some tightness in his right throwing elbow during Sunday’s game after walking three batters in a row. He was pulled from the game, and the team will see how he feels today.
“We needed to take him out,” manager Davey Martinez said. “And we’ll see how he feels [on Monday].”
Fortunately for the Nationals, Glover was not projected to make the Opening Day roster although the possibility of losing him for an extended period could affect the bullpen depth.
Washington Nationals vs. Atlanta Braves
Stadium: Champion Stadium, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, 700 S Victory Way, Lake Buena Vista, FL 34747
1st Pitch: 1:05 pm EDT
Nats Radio: Radio on Braves broadcast and the MLB App
Line-up subject to change (without notice):
- Victor Robles CF
- Wilmer Difo SS
- Juan Soto LF
- Yan Gomes C
- Carter Kieboom 2B
- Jose Marmolejos 1B
- Brandon Snyder RF
- Taylor Gushue DH
- Matt Reynolds 3B
Patrick Corbin LHP