There will be plenty of side drama to tonight's game, with everyone wondering whether there will be any recourse for the Nationals ratting out Rays reliever Joel Peralta's pine tar-laden glove, not to mention Joe Maddon's less-than-complimentary feelings about Davey Johnson.
But of far more importance to the Nationals is the need for a win. They've lost four straight, and the last thing they want to do is extend the streak to five. Fortunately, Stephen Strasburg is on the mound tonight. The Nats have given their ace the ball three times this season while they're stuck in a losing streak of at least three games. Strasburg has won all three games: May 10 at the Pirates, May 20 against the Orioles, June 2 against the Braves.
Strasburg was supposed to be opposed tonight by Jeremy Hellickson, but the budding Rays right-hander was placed on the DL with a shoulder injury. So instead it'll be righty Chris Archer making his big-league debut.
Plenty of updates to come on the Nats Insider live game thread...
TAMPA BAY RAYS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN2, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 187
Weather: Mostly clear, 93 degrees, Wind 5 mph out to CF
LF Steve Lombardozzi
CF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche
RF Michael Morse
SS Ian Desmond
2B Danny Espinosa
C Jesus Flores
RHP Stephen Strasburg
RHP Chris Archer
HP Jeff Nelson, 1B Cory Blaser, 2B Chris Guccione, 3B Tim Tschida (cc)