Bryce Harper is back. Washington Nationals' manager said last night, after the Nats' loss to the San Diego Padres, that they would have to take a wait-and-see approach with their 20-year-old outfielder. Harper's been recovering from his collision with the right field wall in Dodger Stadium early last week, which apparently bruised the entire left side of his body, but it was the left knee in particular that kept Harper on the sidelines in the the third and fourth games in Petco Park. "He's been getting a lot of treatment on it," Johnson told reporters after the finale with the Padres. "He's still got some swelling in there, we'll see how it is tomorrow." Apparently the knee is healed up enough for Harper to get into the lineup tonight in San Francisco, California's AT&T Park:
Tonight's lineup at SFG: Span CF, Lombardozzi 2B, Harper RF, Zimmerman 3B, LaRoche 1B, DesmondSS, Bernadina LF, Solano C, Duke P.— Nationals PR (@NationalsPR) May 20, 2013
Zach Duke is on the mound for the Nationals tonight in place of injured left-hander Ross Detwiler, who's out with an oblique issue. Though Duke, 30, has struggled in his role as the Nats' left-handed long man this season, with an 8.40 ERA, a 4.42 FIP, four walks (2.40 BB/9) and 10 Ks (6.00 K/9) in 15.0 IP, the veteran lefty started at Triple-A Syracuse in the Nationals' organization in 2012, posting a (15-5) record, a 3.51 ERA, 4.09 FIP, 39 walks (2.14 BB/9) and 91 Ks (4.98 K/9) in 26 starts and 164.1 IP in his first year with Washington.
Duke is (2-3) in 10 games, 8 starts and 54.2 IP in his career against the Giants, with a 3.79 ERA, 5 HR (0.82 HR/9) and 15 BB (2.47 BB/9) allowed, 22 Ks (3.62 K/9) collected and a 1.32 WHIP. Jhonatan Solano gets the start behind the plate tonight with Kurt Suzuki getting a rest and Danny Espinosa, who is 1 for 24 with 12 Ks on the current road trip, sits for Steve Lombardozzi, who gets a start at second in the first game of three for the Nats in AT&T.
Game time 10:10 pm EST from San Francisco.