Nationals - Braves lineups: Bryce Harper and Jayson Werth OK to play

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ATLANTA — Bryce Harper and Jayson Werth were in the Washington Nationals’ lineup on Thursday evening, hitting third and fourth respectively in the Nationals’ series finale with the Braves. 

After Harper (side contusion) left Wednesday night’s game following an at-bat in which he checked his swing and appeared to grimace, it was good news for the Nationals that the 20-year-old outfielder felt well enough to play on Thursday. 

Harper, who slammed his left side into the scoreboard in right field trying to rob Tim Hudson of a home run on Tuesday night, had an X-ray done on the area and it came back negative as well.

“I don’t see why I wouldn’t be (in the lineup) unless I feel it in batting practice,” Harper said. “I don’t see it being my oblique or anything like that. It’s more inside my rib area. Maybe I shouldn’t run into walls.”

Johnson said he had few reservations about putting Harper in the lineup, particularly 

“The doctor said it was a very bad bruise,” said manager Davey Johnson. “They took the X-rays to be precautionary and… if he’d have broken some ribs, it would’ve been much more painful. But they did it anyway.

“Hopefully he’s young, real strong. He didn’t want to come out the other day when I took him out. I had to fight him on that. So I wasn’t going to have that same battle today when he said he was good to go.”

As for Werth, who was nursing a swollen left ankle after fouling a ball off it on Monday night in addition to some cramping in his right hamstring, he felt well enough to play. 

“I should be all right,” Werth said, though he noted the ankle was “stiff” but “playable.”

“I felt like I was available last night, if they needed me. So I should be good.”

Both players took batting practice as the final test before Johnson finalized his lineup and they came through it fine. 

Here are the full lineups:

Nationals

Denard Span CF
Steve Lombardozzi 2B
Bryce Harper LF
Jayson Werth RF
Ian Desmond SS
Adam LaRoche 1B
Anthony Rendon 3B
Wilson Ramos C
Dan Haren P

Braves

 Jordan Schafer RF
Chris Johnson 3B
Justin Upton LF
Freddie Freeman 1B
Evan Gattis C
Dan Uggla 2B
B.J. Upton CF
Andrelton Simmons SS
Kris Medlen P 

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About the Author
Amanda Comak

Amanda Comak

Amanda Comak covers the Washington Nationals and comes to The Washington Times from the Cape Cod Times and after stints with MLB.com and the Amsterdam (N.Y.) Recorder. A Massachusetts native and 2008 graduate of Boston University, Amanda can be reached at acomak@washingtontimes.com and you can follow her on Twitter @acomak.

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