Game 14 lineups: Nats vs. Guardians

The Nationals are back home after a seven-game road trip out west and their first off-day since the day after Opening Day. In fact, starting yesterday, they will have three days off over the next week, with two scheduled surrounding the upcoming two-game Battle of the Beltways against the Orioles.

But first they have three games against the Guardians, who make their first trip to Nats Park with their new name and the franchise’s first trip back since the last series of the 2019 regular season. You know, the one that ended an 8-0 homestand and catapulted the Nats into the postseason en route to a World Series title?

(Speaking of name changes, how about the latest news concerning a big change with the local football team, huh?)

These off-days may allow manager Davey Martinez to tinker with his starting rotation in the near future, giving some of his younger arms extra rest. But for tonight’s opener, he’s sticking with where they left off, which means Trevor Williams will make his third start with his new team.

Williams earned his first win on Saturday in Colorado by pitching 5 ½ innings of two-run ball with four strikeouts against the Rockies. Having spent his entire career thus far in the National League, he only has two career starts against Cleveland. But he has a 0.90 ERA over 10 innings against them, aided mostly by a complete-game shutout in a rain-shortened six-inning game at Progressive Field back in 2018.

That still counts, I suppose. They don’t need a complete-game shutout, but the Nats certainly would take six shutout innings from Williams.

The Nationals offense will look to get going against right-hander Cal Quantrill after scoring two or fewer runs in six of their first 13 games. Quantrill got beat up by the Mariners in each of his first two starts to the tune of seven earned runs in 9 ⅔ innings. The 28-year-old has never faced the Nationals during his five-year career.

I’m celebrating my birthday tonight at the ballpark while Mark Zuckerman takes some more well-deserved time off after his journey out west. He’ll be back tomorrow while I take the rest of the weekend off to celebrate with friends and family. But I’ll be taking in the Nats game tomorrow as a fan and then back to Navy Yard for the Defenders’ last home game on Sunday, so if you see me around the area, please say hey!

People always ask me why I spend my birthday at my place of work. And I always respond, “Where else would you rather be than a ballgame?”

Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m. EDT
Radio: 106.7 The Fan,
Weather: Cloudy, 77 degrees, wind 11 mph out to left-center field

LF Alex Call
1B Dominic Smith
DH Joey Meneses
3B Jeimer Candelario
2B Luis García
C Keibert Ruiz
RF Lane Thomas
SS CJ Abrams
CF Victor Robles

RHP Trevor Williams

LF Steven Kwan
SS Amed Rosario
3B José Ramírez
1B Josh Naylor
2B Andrés Giménez
DH Josh Bell
RF Will Brennan
C Mike Zunino
CF Myles Straw

RHP Cal Quantrill

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