Updated: 5:44 p.m.
Nationals (64-44) vs. Giants (62-46) at Nationals Park
After a quick break for both teams, the Nationals and Giants are back at it in another matchup between the two first-place powers. This time it will be on the Nats' home turf, as they begin an eight-game homestand. First pitch in Friday night is at 7:05 p.m.
Gio Gonzalez (6-9, 4.29) gets the start as he aims to keep his positive momentum going. He has allowed nine earned runs over his last five starts across 30 1/3 innings. Gonzalez tossed six innings with just one earned run in his last start, which was also against the Giants on July 31.
The Nats will be without Ryan Zimmerman for the fourth straight game. He has a sore left wrist after getting hit by a pitch in Sunday's loss in San Francisco.
“Zim’s getting better, but he’s still not available tonight," manager Dusty Baker said. "When you get hit like that, ball on bone, it doesn’t heal. There’s no muscle in there. You can treat it all you want. Anybody who’s ever had a bone bruise knows it stays sore for a long time, especially in your hands when you have to make that movement — that’s what’s bothering him — to make that final movement. So, we just hope that he’s better in a day or so.”
Baker went on to discuss whether a stint on the disabled list will be necessary. The team does not know yet.
“Well, we haven’t talked about it. Naturally, the longer you go, the more you think about it. But so far, so good," Baker said.
Starting for San Francisco will be right-hander Jeff Samardzija (9-7, 4.30). Samardzija gave up four earned runs on seven hits and two walks in a loss to the Nats on July 29, his last outing.
Denard Span is batting leadoff for the Giants, which means this will be his official return to Washington since he signed away in free agency. CSN caught up with Span before the game and he said he is excited to be back.
"It feels a little awkward, to be honest. But it feels good. When I walked into the stadium, I almost walked into the home clubhouse because I did that for so many years. But it feels good to be here," he said.
He will have the first at-bat of the game, which will give Nationals fans a good opportunity to show their respect for his three seasons in D.C. He hopes it's a positive reaction.
"I hope it's a warm one," he said. "I hope that they appreciated the three years that I gave to this team and this organization. I'm looking forward to just going out there and seeing the fans and some of my old teammates."
First pitch: 7:05 p.m.
Radio: 106.7 The Fan
Starting pitchers: Nats - Gio Gonzalez vs. Giants - Jeff Samardzija
CF Trea Turner
LF Jayson Werth
RF Bryce Harper
2B Daniel Murphy
C Wilson Ramos
3B Anthony Rendon
1B Clint Robinson
SS Danny Espinosa
LHP Gio Gonzalez
CF Denard Span
LF Angel Pagan
3B Eduardo Nunez
1B Buster Posey
RF Hunter Pence
SS Brandon Crawford
C Trevor Brown
2B Ehire Adrianza
RHP Jeff Samardzija