NLDS Game 4 lineups: Nats at Dodgers

LOS ANGELES - The Nationals today have the opportunity to do something they've never done before, not to mention something no major pro sports franchise in D.C. has done in a long time. With a victory in Game 4 of the National League Division Series, they would advance to their first National League Championship Series. In doing so, they would become the first D.C. team to reach the semifinals of its sport since the 1998 Capitals went to the Stanley Cup Final.

So no pressure today, guys. Right?

postseason-base.jpgActually, this has felt like a pretty relaxed and loose group ever since Jose Lobaton's three-run homer early in Game 2. And you wouldn't think that's suddenly going to change this afternoon when they take the field at Dodger Stadium for Game 4. Though the matchup is a tough one.

Clayton Kershaw is coming back on three days' rest to make this start, something manager Dave Roberts admitted was necessary given his club's now-or-never situation. This isn't uncharted territory for Kershaw; it's actually the fourth straight year he has come back on short rest to start Game 4 of the NLDS. (The Dodgers have won two of those previous three games, though they only wound up winning one of the three series.)

Dusty Baker is going with Joe Ross to start this game, a decision that was made last night. He knows Ross probably can't go as many innings as Reynaldo Lopez, but he also knows he doesn't have to worry about pinch-hitting for Ross in a big spot early, and he knows Lopez has shown the ability to pitch well in relief. It seems a near certainty he'll be the first man out of the bullpen today.

Baker also is going with the same lineup he used in Game 1 against Kershaw. That means Bryce Harper is batting second with Jayson Werth third. And it means Pedro Severino (who doubled off Kershaw) is starting behind the plate and batting eighth.

Where: Dodger Stadium
Gametime: 5:05 p.m. EDT
TV: FS1,
Radio: 106.7 FM, 570 AM, XM 80/89,
Weather: Partly cloudy, 70 degrees, wind 6 mph out to center field

CF Trea Turner
RF Bryce Harper
LF Jayson Werth
2B Daniel Murphy
3B Anthony Rendon
1B Ryan Zimmerman
SS Danny Espinosa
C Pedro Severino
RHP Joe Ross

2B Chase Utley
SS Corey Seager
3B Justin Turner
1B Adrian Gonzalez
RF Josh Reddick
CF Joc Pederson
C Yasmani Grandal
LF Andrew Toles
LHP Clayton Kershaw

Strasburg has "a little discomfort" during bullpen...
It's Ross vs. Kershaw in Game 4

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