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Braves Take On Strasburg-less Nationals In Washington

Ever since Stephen Strasburg was called up to the major leagues in early June, practically everyone in baseball has been eagerly anticipating the first matchup between the flamethrowing right-hander and the Braves' own highly touted rookie, Jason Heyward. Fans missed out on this matchup in Strasburg's first outing against the Braves (an Atlanta win) because Heyward was on the disabled list. It looked like the matchup would finally take place today in Washington, though.

Unfortunately, Strasburg (5-2, 2.32 ERA in 9 starts) felt some minor discomfort while warming up, and the Nationals, being understandably very cautious with their valuable rookie, decided to err on the side of caution and keep Strasburg from pitching tonight. Veteran right-hander Miguel Batista will make the start for the Nationals. Batista has pitched solely out of the bullpen this year, compiling an 0-2 record, one save, and a 4.50 ERA in 50 innings.

The Braves, who are trying to recover from a tough series loss to the Florida Marlins, throw Tommy Hanson (8-6, 4.12 ERA) in the series opener.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.