Washington Nationals' skipper Matt Williams was confident that after second baseman Asdrubal Cabrera tested his side before Monday night's game, he would be able to return to the lineup for the second game of the Nats' three-game set tonight in Philadelphia.
The 28-year-old infielder experienced discomfort in his right side as he grounded out in the seventh inning of Sunday afternoon's game in the nation's capital, so he was out of the starting lineup for the series opener in Citizens Bank Park, though he did single in a pinch hit appearance in the ninth inning last night..
After the Nats' loss, Williams predicted that Cabrera would be ready for the second game of three with the Phillies.
"He came out fine," Williams said after Cabrera made it through the pregame workout and pinch hit appearance without any issues.
The Nationals' first-year manager said he was comfortable using Cabrera late in the game after seeing he was fine during batting practice.
"I wanted to stay away from him if at all possible tonight to give him a day to make sure," Williams explained, "but we knew after batting practice. He went through a full BP and swung from both sides and had no issues. So he should be good to go."
When the lineup for tonight's game was posted today, Cabrera was back in, batting and playing second, but Bryce Harper and Adam LaRoche were both left out as the Nationals go up against left-hander Cole Hamels.
Harper is sitting for the third straight game against Hamels.
Scott Hairston, who is 17 for 44 (.386/.426/.841) with five doubles and five home runs in 47 career plate appearances against the Philies' lefty is getting the start in left.
Kevin Frandsen is playing first tonight as LaRoche sits.
• Here's the Nationals' lineup for the second game of three in CBP:
#Nats lineup vs. Phillies: Span CF, Cabrera 2B, Rendon 3B, Werth RF, Desmond SS, Hairston LF, Ramos C, Frandsen 1B, Gonzalez LHP— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) August 26, 2014
Gio Gonzalez is on the mound for the Nats in Citizens Bank Park tonight, coming off a strong start vs the Arizona Diamondbacks last time out in which he threw seven scoreless in a 1-0 Nats' win.
Gonzalez struggled last time out against the Phillies though, giving up eight hits, a walk and five earned runs in just 3 ⅔ IP of a 10-4 loss on July 31st.