Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Nationals host the Cardinals for Game 2 of a 4-game series tonight.
Scott Olsen starts for the Nationals against Cardinals rookie left-hander Jaime Garcia. Another new-look lineup from Jim Riggleman: Alberto Gonzalez leads off, Ian Desmond returns to the 2-hole, Justin Maxwell starts in center field with Nyjer Morgan out.
Strasburg is about to speak in the Nationals' interview room (you can watch it live on CSNwashington.com) and I'll provide updates of what he had to say in a little while. Check back here the evening for game updates...
CARDINALS at NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m.
Radio: WFED-1500 AM, WWFD-820 AM
Weather: Sunny, 79 degrees, Wind 4 mph out to LF
2B Alberto Gonzalez
SS Ian Desmond
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam Dunn
RF Michael Morse
LF Roger Bernadina
C Ivan Rodriguez
CF Justin Maxwell
P Scott Olsen
RF Allen Craig
CF Jon Jay
1B Albert Pujols
LF Matt Holliday
2B Felipe Lopez
3B Pedro Feliz
C Bryan Anderson
SS Brendan Ryan
P Jaime Garcia
7:08 p.m. -- Scott Olsen throws a 90 mph strike past Allen Craig and this game is underway. Life goes on.
7:15 p.m. -- Albert Pujols crushes a 2-2 breaking ball from Olsen into the left-field bleachers for the 401st home run of his career. Life really goes on. Cardinals lead 1-0 after one half-inning.
7:23 p.m. -- Alberto Gonzalez is getting a chance to hit leadoff tonight. He's been on the Nationals' active roster the entire season, from Opening Day straight through til now. He's played in 88 games and gotten 126 at-bats. And his RBI total is four. FOUR! Wil Nieves has 15. Craig Stammen has six. It's not easy to post one RBI for every 31.5 at-bats you get.
7:41 p.m. -- You can debate whether it was really necessary for the Cardinals to intentionally walk Justin Maxwell (owner of a .100 batting average) to get to Scott Olsen (owner of an .095 batting average) but Tony La Russa's move did work. Olsen struck out on three pitches to end the bottom of the second, stranding the bases loaded. Cards still lead 1-0 as we head to the third.
7:57 p.m. -- It takes some real talent to produce an E2, an E3 and an E4 in a span of five batters. Then again, this is NatsTown, where nothing that happens in the field is surprising. Three errors in the top of the third lead to two unearned runs. The Cardinals now lead 3-0.
8:02 p.m. -- That was the second time in Nats history they committed three errors in one inning. Also did it on September 7, 2007 at Atlanta. Pop the champagne!
8:08 p.m. -- They are really outdoing themselves tonight. Somehow, the Nats just managed to put four men on base in the bottom of the third ... and not score. Ryan Zimmerman's double play took care of the first two outs. Roger Bernadina's strikeout with the bases loaded took care of the final out.
8:27 p.m. -- Four innings in the books, Cards still lead 3-0.
8:43 p.m. -- Five innings, eight runners left on base by the Nationals. Where have we seen this before?
9:09 p.m. -- Another golden opportunity for the Nats (bases loaded, one out) and nothing to show for it. Adam Kennedy (and the crowd) thought he had at least a two-run double down the right-field line, but Dan Bellino ruled it foul. If it didn't hit chalk, it came really close to it. Close, of course, doesn't count in these matters. Kennedy wound up popping out, and Ian Desmond grounded out. Inning over. Eleven men stranded on base through six innings. Cardinals lead 3-0.
9:46 p.m. -- You know, the only thing this game has been missing is Nyjer Morgan getting picked off first ba... oh wait, it just happened.
9:47 p.m. -- And, of course, Willie Harris homers on the next pitch. Nats now trail 4-1, could've been 4-2 had Nyjer still been on base.
10:14 p.m. -- It's over. Nats lose 4-2. They stranded 14 men on base. That's their fifth loss in six games since Strasburg went down. They've scored a total of 13 runs in their last 10 losses. Not good.