The Washington Times - April 12, 2009, 01:08PM

The Nats finish their season-opening road trip today against the Braves, trying to avoid an 0-6 start, and we’ll get to that in a little bit. But first, let’s look ahead to tomorrow’s home opener at Nationals Park.

According to team president Stan Kasten, there are still some tickets available, “but not many.” Stan didn’t specify how many of those tickets that have been sold went to fans from Philadelphia (I kid, I kid).


As for the person who will be throwing out the ceremonial first pitch … officially, the Nats have not been told that President Barack Obama will or won’t be there. That said, you’ve probably read by now what we reported Thursday evening and what others have since corroborated: The White House doesn’t expect Obama to attend. Either way, the Nats do have a backup first-pitch-thrower ready to go. Kasten wouldn’t reveal his or her name. Any ideas? Joe Biden? Frank Howard? George W. Bush?

The actual game against the Phillies starts at 3:05 p.m. Gates to the center-field plaza open at 12:30 p.m., with the entire stadium opening to the public at 1:30 p.m. The Nats will actually take batting practice second (after the Phillies) for this one occasion so that more fans can be there to see it in person. The team is advising all fans to budget extra time to get there early because of traffic and other potential security measures.

OK, today’s lineups. Note that Lastings Milledge has the day off, as do Nick Johnson and Jesus Flores…


SS Cristian Guzman

CF Elijah Dukes

3B Ryan Zimmerman

1B Adam Dunn

RF Austin Kearns

LF Josh Willingham

C Josh Bard

2B Willie Harris

P Scott Olsen


2B Omar Infante

SS Yunel Escobar

3B Chipper Jones

C Brian McCann

LF Matt Diaz

RF Jeff Francoeur

1B Martin Prado

CF Jordan Schafer

P Jair Jurrjens