It will be Dukes' first appearance on that field since June 2007. Dukes finished that season hitting .190 with 10 home runs and 21 RBIs in 52 games. On June 22, the Rays optioned Dukes to the Minor Leagues and placed him on the temporary inactive list. Dukes didn't play another Major League game for the Rays.
WSH: Craig Stammen, (0-2, 6.45)
Stammen got himself into trouble right away on Sunday against the Mets, walking leadoff hitter Alex Cora, and he proceeded to give up five first-inning runs on three hits, two walks and two wild pitches. "I just didn't have any sink on my fastball," Stammen said. "I didn't make good pitches; anybody can hit those." The Nationals have placed an emphasis on their young pitchers to throw strikes, but Stammen deviated from that plan. On a positive note, he did pitch through the fifth inning without giving up any additional runs. TB: RHP Matt Garza (4-4, 3.55 ERA)
At age 25, Garza seems to be maturing on the mound, where he has experienced problems controlling his emotions. In the past, Garza has lacked steadiness, but he has been Mr. Consistency in 2009, with eight quality starts in 12 outings. Garza went just five innings on Sunday against the Yankees, but he allowed only two hits while taking a no-decision. Garza will be making his first career start against the Nationals; he is 10-5 with a 3.06 ERA in 22 career starts at Tropicana Field. Tidbits
In his past 19 games, outfielder Josh Willingham is hitting .327 with four home runs, four RBIs, 10 walks and 12 runs scored. ... Left-hander John Lannan has a 1.72 ERA at Nationals Park this year. Tickets
Buy tickets now to catch the game in person. On the Internet
Official game notes On television
MASN 2 On radio
WFED 1500, SBN 1390 (Español), ESPN 730 (Sp.) Up next
Saturday: Nationals (Jordan Zimmermann, 2-3, 5.71) at Rays (Andy Sonnanstine, 4-6, 7.00), 6:08 p.m. ET
Sunday: Nationals (Ross Detwiler, 0-3, 5.06) at Rays (James Shields, 5-5, 3.36), 1:38 p.m. ET
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.