The Phillies take on two members of the 2008 WFC team that set
Philadelphia ablaze with that most glorious parade down Broad Street.
Jayson Werth and Matt Stairs left the Phillies under very different
conditions, but they've both found their way to Washington, DC where
they'll be in the heart of the order for the Nationals tonight.
Werth's first game against his former team is most notable, of
course, due to his signing a gigantic 7-year, $126 million deal to play
for the lowly Nationals. Add on some friendly fightin' words directed
towards his former club, and the Phils-Nats rivalry has a little juice.
I'd except an influx of Phillis fans at Nationals Park tonight to
give both Werth and Stairs great ovations the first time they're
announced through the batting order in thanks for what they accomplished
here. After that, it's open season on the enemy. Something like the Pat
Joe Blanton (0-0, 14.54) will get his second turn through the
rotation and go up against the timeless Livan Hernandez (1-0, 4.76).
Much of the Phillies success last season came when they beat the
teams they were supposed to beat, including a 12-6 record against the
Nationals. Philly fans should expect nothing less from their squad this
season, especially with the revamped rotation and Washington likely
being without their ace for the entire season.
Charlie Manuel will go with the regular lineup this evening while the
Nats will go with a rag-tag bunch while Ryan Zimmerman rests up on the
DL and Adam LaRoche sits battling his own injuries. Werth is set to bat
third while Stairs, an unlikely first base backup, is set to bat
7:05 from dreary DC. Should be fun to see J-Dubs take on his former team.