The Washington Times - September 29, 2012, 06:14PM

ST. LOUIS — So here they are.

The Washington Nationals have played 157 games in the 2012 season and now, as they prepare for Game No. 158, there will be champagne in the house at Busch Stadium. If the Nationals beat the Cardinals Saturday evening and the Atlanta Braves lose to the New York Mets, the Nationals will be the National League East champions. 


All that’ll be left is finding out whether they’re the No. 1 or No. 2 overall seed in the playoffs and where they’ll be heading for the NLDS next weekend. 

But first things first. They have to take care of their own end of things, and that involves beating the Cardinals and Kyle Lohse, who is 16-3 with a 2.77 ERA but a pitcher the Nationals handled the last time he faced them at the start of the month.

In a 10-9 Cardinals victory, Lohse gave up eight runs, five of them earned, in 5 2/3 innings of work. Jordan Zimmermann had one of his worst days on the other side, though.

Zimmermann will get a chance to redeem himself Saturday, a chance to be the man who helps pitch the Nationals to their first divisional championship.

Here are the full lineups behind them:


Jayson Werth RF
Bryce Harper CF
Ryan Zimmerman 3B
Adam LaRoche 1B
Michael Morse LF
Ian Desmond SS
Danny Espinosa 2B
Kurt Suzuki C
Jordan Zimmermann P


Jon Jay CF
Matt Carpenter 3B
Matt Holliday LF
Allen Craig 1B
Yadier Molina C
Carlos Beltran RF
Skip Schumaker 2B
Pete Kozma SS
Kyle Lohse P