Game 64 lineups: Nats vs. Cubs

So you may have heard there's a pretty big series taking place here in town this week. The Cubs and Nationals are as big as it gets in baseball at this moment, owners of the two best records in the sport and loaded with star power. So it's no surprise the sport is going to be focused on South Capitol Street over the next three nights.

Let's be honest, though: The Nationals need these games more than the Cubs do. Not that any series in mid-June is that important, certainly one that's not even against a division opponent. But after getting swept in a four-game series at Wrigley Field last month, the Nats legitimately do want to prove they can hang with these guys. It may not matter in the long run, but psychologically do you really want to go 0-for-the-season against another team, let alone one you might face again in October?

The big question this series is the Cubs' plan of attack against Bryce Harper. They refused to pitch to him last month, but this is a very different Nationals lineup now, with Daniel Murphy batting fourth, Wilson Ramos, Ryan Zimmerman and Anthony Rendon all hitting as well. You've got to think Joe Maddon is rethinking his strategy, right?

As for the pitching matchup, the Nats send Max Scherzer to the mound tonight against Kyle Hendricks. Scherzer, as always, will be looking to keep the ball in the park. He gave up four homers to the Cubs in his last meeting. Hendricks, meanwhile, tossed six scoreless innings of two-hit ball last time. The Nationals will hope to have a better plan of attack in their rematch against the right-hander...

Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m. EDT
Radio: 106.7 FM, XM 184,
Weather: Clear, 78 degrees, wind 8 mph left field to right field

Bryce-Harper-intentional-walk-Cubs-pink-sidebar.jpgNATIONALS (39-24)
CF Ben Revere
LF Jayson Werth
RF Bryce Harper
2B Daniel Murphy
1B Ryan Zimmerman
C Wilson Ramos
3B Anthony Rendon
SS Danny Espinosa
RHP Max Scherzer

CUBS (43-18)
CF Dexter Fowler
RF Jason Heyward
3B Kris Bryant
1B Anthony Rizzo
2B Ben Zobrist
LF Chris Coghlan
C Miguel Montero
SS Adison Russell
RHP Kyle Hendricks

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