Game 144 lineups: Nats vs. Marlins

Would you believe we’re down to the final three weeks of the season? Yep, tonight the Nationals begin a six-game homestand with the Marlins and Rockies. After that, they’re on a three-city road trip to Miami, Cincinnati and Colorado. And then they come home for the final series against the Red Sox. And that’s it. Time flies when you’re having fun. Or something like that.

The Nats will be hoping to actually win this series from the Marlins, a task that proved too difficult the last time they faced them. If you care about who finishes fourth and who finishes fifth in the National League East, these games matter a lot.

Espino-Throwing-White-Sidebar.jpgPaolo Espino gets the start, and he’s had some success against Miami, tossing five scoreless innings in a July 20 victory. The right-hander is trying to finish his season on a high note and ideally get his ERA back under 4.00 before heading home for the winter.

Some good news: Keibert Ruiz is back in the Nationals lineup two days after he was struck by a pitch near his right ear. The rookie catcher cleared all concussion tests, X-rays were negative and he isn’t dealing with any headaches at this point. The club will monitor him closely, but for now this seems like a very fortunate result given how scary it looked at the time.

MIAMI MARLINS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN
Radio: 106.7 FM, MLB.com
Weather: Partly cloudy, 86 degrees, wind 5 mph out to right field

NATIONALS
CF Lane Thomas
SS Alcides Escobar
RF Juan Soto
1B Josh Bell
LF Yadiel Hernandez
3B Carter Kieboom
C Keibert Ruiz
2B Luis García
RHP Paolo Espino

MARLINS
SS Miguel Rojas
2B Jazz Chisholm Jr.
CF Bryan De La Cruz
RF Jesús Sánchez
LF Lewis Brinson
1B Lewin Díaz
C Alex Jackson
3B Isan Díaz
RHP Sandy Alcantara

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