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Nationals’ lineup vs the Orioles: Dusty Baker on returning home...

The so-called “Battle of the Beltways” changes venue as the Washington Nationals and Baltimore Orioles play the first of two in Nationals Park tonight.

Milwaukee Brewers v Washington Nationals Photo by Matt Hazlett/Getty Images

The Washington Nationals have been away from home for all but eight of the first twenty-four days this month, and Nats’ skipper Dusty Baker told reporters he was looking forward to getting back home after last night’s loss to the Baltimore Orioles.

“It's good to be going home,” Baker said. “It seems like we haven't been home in a month.

They won’t be home for too long, of course.

“We're home just a short period of time. I think we're home like five days and then we're back on the road again,” Baker acknowledged.

“We knew this way going to be a tough period. But you go home, you regroup. You've got people that love you when you go home. Guys want to see their kids and their wives. You can regroup. Then, we've gotta head back on the road again.”

After two more with the Orioles and three with the Colorado Rockies in D.C., it’s off to Philadelphia and New York before they return to the nation’s capital again to face the Atlanta Braves, Phillies and Mets in some NL East action.

Before they move on to intra-division action, however, the Nationals have to play the O’s and Rockies.

Dusty Baker talked after the first of two in Oriole Park at Camden Yards about his first experience of the so-called “regional rivalry” with the Orioles.

“It had a feeling,” he said. “I saw a lot of orange mixed in with some red. I thought there might have been possibly more people here, but it was also the beginning of school, which I understood too, and it’s school time, it probably would have been better to play them on a weekend, you’d really see the difference.

“It’s a beautiful stadium, a beautiful place to play.”

Now it’s time to play two in Nationals Park. And starting today, the Nationals play 15 of their next 21 games at home and 21 of the final 36 games on the schedule.

Here’s the lineup for tonight’s matchup with the Orioles: