Don't look now, but the Nationals' national profile - at least in the eyes of those people responsible for putting together nationally televised baseball schedules- is on the rise.
ESPN released its preliminary 2012 "Sunday Night Baseball" schedule this morning and the slate includes two games involving the Nationals. The Phillies' visit to Nationals Park on Sunday, May 6 will air in prime time, as will the Nats' game at Turner Field in Atlanta on Sunday, May 27. It's possible the Nationals could get additional airtime, as the schedule for June 3-July 1 and July 22-Sept. 23 has not yet been finalized.
The Nationals haven't been on "Sunday Night Baseball" since the 2008 season opener at Nationals Park, when Ryan Zimmerman hit a game-winning walk-off home run in the inaugural game at the new stadium against the Braves. Their only other appearances on the prime time Sunday broadcast were May 1, 2005 against the Mets and April 23, 2006 against the Braves, both at RFK Stadium.