What to Watch for: 4.14.13

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Atlanta Braves (10-1) vs. Washington Nationals (7-4)

LHP Paul Maholm (2-0, 0.00) vs. LHP Gio Gonzalez (1-0, 0.82)

Washington looks to wrap up a winning homestand as the Nationals try to salvage the final game of a three-game set with Atlanta Sunday afternoon. In a battle of undefeated southpaws, the Nats send Gio Gonzalez against Braves lefty Paul Maholm.

NATIONALS LINEUP:

1. Span CF

2. Werth RF

3. Harper LF

4. Zimmerman 3B

5. LaRoche 1B

6. Desmond SS

7. Espinosa 2B

8. Suzuki C

9. Gonzalez LHP

FOR STARTERS …

The Braves have handed the Nationals a pair of losses here the last 48 hours despite strong efforts on Friday from Ross Detwiler (7.0 innings, one run allowed) and on Saturday from Stephen Strasburg (6.0 innings, two unearned runs allowed). Collectively, Washington’s two starters have posted a 0.69 ERA (1 ER/13.0 IP), a 4.0/1 K-to-BB ratio, and a .191 batting average against in the two losses.

MASHING MEANINGFULLY

Bryce Harper team-best fifth homer in the first inning on Friday provided Washington an early 2-0 lead. Four of Harper’s five homers this year have either tied the game or given the Nationals the lead.

EXTRA, EXTRA READ ALL ABOUT IT!

The Nationals pace the NL as 41.6 percent of their hits this season have gone for extra bases. In ‘13, Washington’s 89 hits include 18 doubles, two triples and 17 home runs. The Mets rank second in extra-base hit rate at 39.4%.

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