The Washington Nationals have another series with the Atlanta Braves. The first time they faced each other in 2021, the game ended on a Juan Soto walk-off single in a slugfest. Now we wait for the news on Soto as to if the team will allow him to be activated for tonight’s game. We do know that Joe Ross is scheduled to start this game after the Nats gave him a few more rest days between starts. The Nats did not have a game yesterday and woke up to find themselves in sole possession of first place for the first time in the regular season since May 30 of 2018.
The Braves are supposed to start righty Huascar Ynoa in this game. He has been excellent pitching in his home park and not so good on the road where his ERA in two starts is over 5.00. This year, Ynoa has reverse splits. Righties hit him much better than lefties at an .806 OPS versus .390. No lefty has hit a home run off of Ynoa this year, however righties have five home runs against him in 2021.
We will see what lineup manager Dave Martinez pencils up. You can expect both Josh Bell and Kyle Schwarber to be starting and batting from the lefties’ batters box. The only other lefties would be if Soto starts or Yadiel Hernandez in his place, Avila at catcher, and Andrew Stevenson in centerfield. Of course sample sizes are still small as opponent batters have only faced Ynoa for 106 plate appearances so far.
The big question is when Soto is activated, who gets sent down? Would it be Hernandez or Hernan Perez? Most feel Perez’s biggest contribution to the team was his 2.0 innings of mop-up relief work and the 0.00 ERA to go with it. With an 8-man bullpen, they probably could cover any of Perez’s projected innings in the future.
Atlanta Braves vs. Washington Nationals
Stadium: Nationals Park, Washington, D.C.
1st Pitch: 7:05 pm EDT
TV: MASN, BALLY Sports Southeast, MLB.TV
Nats Radio: 106.7 FM The Fan; SiriusXM® ( Streaming Internet 869)
Line-ups subject to change without notice: