Game 145: Nationals at Braves

Adam Berry here at Turner Field, pinch-hitting for Bill Ladson. For more news and notes and in-game updates, check out Nationals.com and follow me on Twitter @adamdberry.

Just a reminder that today’s game is a 4:05 p.m. first pitch on FOX. The Nats and Braves will have the national spotlight on them quite a bit these next two days, with a FOX game today and ESPN Sunday Night Baseball tomorrow night. With all that going on, you could find three separate cameras set up in the visiting dugout at Turner Field, yet none of them by the local MASN crew, which has the next two days off.

Anyway, before we get to the lineups, here’s what was happening at Turner Field before the game…

-Michael Morse is still not playing, but that was expected, as yesterday’s notebook said he figured to miss the whole series here. The doctors have told the Nats that Morse can’t injure his left wrist any more by playing, and it’s simply a matter of pain tolerance. As it stands now, Morse is still too sore to play.

-Steve Lombardozzi is starting in left field tonight against Braves righty Tommy Hanson because, as manager Davey Johnson said in a relaxed pregame briefing with the writers, “Lombo’s got 50 percent of his home runs off this guy.” Can’t argue with the facts: Lombardozzi hit one of his two homers this season off Hanson. Tyler Moore will get the start tomorrow.

-The majority of today’s talk with Johnson focused on hitting, more specifically what the Nats needed to improve and have improved this season — approach, mechanics and nearly everything else about the art of hitting a baseball with a bat. Well, Johnson made it sound simple, at least.

“It is,” Johnson said. “It’s hard because people listen to all these gurus that don’t know **** about it, and then they get off track.”

Anyway, about those lineups…

Nationals (89-55)
Jayson Werth RF
Bryce Harper CF
Ryan Zimmerman 3B
Adam LaRoche 1B
Ian Desmond SS
Danny Espinosa 2B
Jesus Flores C
Steve Lombardozzi LF
Edwin Jackson RHP

Braves (82-63)
Michael Bourn CF
Martin Prado 2B
Jason Heyward RF
Brian McCann C
Freddie Freeman 1B
Dan Uggla 2B
Juan Francisco 3B
Andrelton Simmons SS
Tommy Hanson RHP

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