A couple pregame notes leading up to the Nationals' series finale with the Mariners:
* Jim Riggleman said he will likely hit Roger Bernadina leadoff against right-handed pitchers and will probably slide Jayson Werth back into the leadoff spot against lefties, unless there's a left-handed pitcher against whom Bernadina matches up particularly well. But all of the Nationals' lineup shifting seems to be an ongoing process; Bernadina is the closest thing to a prototypical leadoff hitter they have, while Werth is better at getting on base than most of their other options.
They want Werth hitting second in a perfect world, though, and he hasn't exactly torn it up in the leadoff spot - he's hitting .179/.289/.333 in 10 games in the leadoff spot. "As much as Jayson was wanting to lead off, I think at this point he kind of feels like, 'Let me get back in that second spot,'" Riggleman said.
And it's not as though anything the Nationals have tried in the spot has worked especially well; their first batters of the game are hitting .181/.203/.236 this season, and overall, they've gotten a .205/.270/.308 from their leadoff hitters.
* Laynce Nix is sitting out for the second straight game with a sore right Achilles tendon, though he's available to pinch hit. He'll likely be back in the Nationals' lineup tomorrow, and should be able to play the field, though the Nationals could use him as a designated hitter against the White Sox.
I'll have a discussion thread ready to go in a couple minutes, and we'll get into our game coverage.