The Spring Training schedule has matched up the Washington Nationals with some AL East opponents already, and now it is the Baltimore Orioles turn to face the Nats. Back home in the Mid-Atlantic, these two teams are linked by geography, a regional sports network (MASN), and decades of animosity. Even before the Washington Nationals came to existence, the Orioles owner, Peter Angelos, was wrangling to make sure no team made it back into Washington, D.C. unless he was handsomely compensated. The list of concessions that MLB made to Angelos to allow the Montreal Expos to relocate to D.C. were mind-blowing. Not only was Angelos handed the majority ownership to MASN, but he also got seed money to do it. If you have time, read what Baltimore journalist and former O’s beat writer Nestor Aparicio has written in the past on the subject. While the owners are still entrenched in a lawsuit, the players on the field have been insulated by much of the legal fracas. The Nationals do not have the money they want from the MASN annual rights fees, and you have to wonder when that will be resolved after they have been fighting in the courts since 2011 on the annual rights fees.
The Nats have Max Scherzer on the mound for his fourth outing of the spring although one of them was officially rained out after he exited the game. As Max ramps up his pitch count, this is about working through the process and building up his stamina.
For the Orioles, they have lefty Ty Blach on the mound with most of the Orioles first team in tow which is surprising that veterans like Chris Davis and Jose Iglesias made the long trip from Sarasota, Florida. The Nats will see ex-teammate Pedro Severino behind the plate and some other familiar faces. Last year the O’s lost a staggering 108 games which is worse than any season the Nats ever had including those early years after moving from Montreal.
First pitch for this game is at 1:05 pm with radio coverage on the MLB app or you can follow along in the comments section and on the GameDay coverage on the MLB app.
Nationals manager Dave Martinez is going with a very good looking lineup today that could be close to what you might see on Opening Day with the exception of no Victor Robles who is taking his time to get back on the field. With Howie Kendrick in at the DH, it is Jake Noll who is playing with the starters today along with Michael A. Taylor in for Robles. You will also notice that Eric Thames has been out of big league action for over a week with no reports on his whereabouts. It looks like Hunter Strickland is back today in the Nats bullpen, and Robles is scheduled to be back by this weekend. That just seems to leave Thames as the unknown.
- Trea Turner SS
- Adam Eaton RF
- Starlin Castro 2B
- Juan Soto LF
- Howie Kendrick DH
- Asdrubal Cabrera 3B
- Kurt Suzuki C
- Michael Taylor CF
- Jake Noll 1B
Max Scherzer RHP