Game 90 lineups: Nats at Phillies

PHILADELPHIA - The Nationals arrive in Pennsylvania tonight as the hottest team in baseball, 8-2 over their last 10 games and 28-11 since a unpleasant start to the season.

The offense is clicking, the bullpen is holding its own, the defense is showing off and the starting pitching is what the Nats expected from the start of the campaign. But manager Davey Martinez is cautiously optimistic as they begin a critical series against the Phillies tonight at Citizens Bank Park.

“I look at what we achieved, what we went through at the beginning and where we are at now,” Martinez said. “It’s a testament how these guys do not quit and they keep playing. The chemistry has been there all year. I knew that. I told these guys, ‘Hey stay together. We are going to get through this,’ and they did.

“When you look back as a player you never say, ‘Oh man, I hit .300 before the All-Star break. No. You look at the big picture which is at the end of the year. Let’s be mindful that we’re playing good but yeah, we still got a long way to go.”

Strasburg-Winds-Gray@PHI-sidebar.jpgTonight, the Nationals turn to one of their top two ace starters to set the tone, right-hander Stephen Strasburg, who allowed 19 runs in June but then made a statement July 3 with 14 strikeouts in 7 1/3 shutout innings of the Marlins. He is 6-1 in his last seven games.

The Phillies counter with former Nats farmhand Nick Pivetta. The 2013 fourth-round Nats’ selection is 4-3 with a 5.84 ERA in 11 starts. The right-hander has not won a game since June 8 and got knocked around against the Braves July 3, allowing six runs (five earned) on five hits, including two three-run homers in 5 2/3 innings of a 9-2 loss.

The Nationals announced a roster move today, recalling right-hander Kyle McGowin from Double-A Harrisburg. Southpaw reliever Jonny Venters has been placed on the injured list with a left shoulder strain.

WASHINGTON NATIONALS at PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES
Where: Citzens Bank Park
Gametime: 6:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: 106.7 FM, 1500 AM, MLB.com
Weather: Sunny, 87 degrees, no precipitation expected, wind 8 mph out to right field

NATIONALS (47-42)

SS Trea Turner
RF Adam Eaton
3B Anthony Rendon
LF Juan Soto
1B Ryan Zimmerman
2B Brian Dozier
C Kurt Suzuki
CF Victor Robles
RHP Stephen Strasburg

PHILLIES (47-43)

CF Scott Kingery
SS Jean Segura
RF Bryce Harper
1B Rhys Hoskins
LF Jay Bruce
2B César Hernández
3B Maikel Franco
C Andrew Knapp
RHP Nick Pivetta

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