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Nationals-Marlins live game thread - 1:10 p.m.

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Nationals-Marlins live game thread - 1:10 p.m.

MIAMI -- Hello, for the first time, from Marlins Park, home of the bullpen bar with dancing girls, the lime green outfield fence, the fish tank in the backstop and the home run thingamajig. Photos truly cannot do this thing justice. It is massive.

Perhaps it's a good thing the Nationals are a bit loopy this morning after their short turnaround from last night's game in Atlanta. Said Davey Johnson: "I feel like I flew from Beijing to Miami." Guys are in a good mood, though, helped by the fact they just swept the Braves.

There's a new face in the clubhouse as well. Outfielder Corey Brown had his contract purchased from Class AAA Syracuse (where he led the team with 11 homers, five of them over his last five games). Chad Tracy, meanwhile, has been placed on the 15-day DL with a groin injury; he'll fly to Philadelphia tomorrow to be examined but could miss significant time. To make room on the 40-man roster for Brown, Jayson Werth has been transferred to the 60-day DL. Jesus Flores, meanwhile, says his right hamstring feels much better, and he hopes to be able to catch tomorrow night.

It's Jordan Zimmermann vs. Carlos Zambrano on this Memorial Day. Live updates and analysis to come on Nats Insider...

WASHINGTON NATIONALS at MIAMI MARLINS
Where: Marlins Park
Gametime: 1:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 186
Weather: Indoors

NATIONALS (29-18)
LF Steve Lombardozzi
RF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche
SS Ian Desmond
2B Danny Espinosa
CF Rick Ankiel
C Carlos Maldonado
RHP Jordan Zimmermann

MARLINS (26-22)
SS Jose Reyes
2B Omar Infante
3B Hanley Ramirez
RF Giancarlo Stanton
1B Logan Morrison
CF Bryan Petersen
C John Buck
LF Chris Coghlan
RHP Carlos Zambrano

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Ledecky explains how Bryce Harper ended up wearing her swim cap

Ledecky explains how Bryce Harper ended up wearing her swim cap

When the Nationals clinched the AL East, you might have noticed Bryce Harper sporting a swim cap as he and his teammates celebrated with the traditional champagne spraying.

He got the swim cap from none other than Olympic gold medalist and Bethesda native Katie Ledecky… but how exactly did he acquire it from her? 

Remember when she threw out the first pitch at the Nationals game while Harper held all of her medals? Ledecky sent Harper a thank you note for doing that, along with one of her swim caps. 

“I told him that maybe [the swim cap] could help him contain his hair as he was rounding third base,” Ledecky joked in a Twitter video posted by Stephen Whyno during Wednesday night’s Team USA Awards. 

Harper might not have used the cap for that, but we’re pretty sure Ledecky approves of how Harper used the cap anyway. 

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Nats not ready to reveal playoff rotation, how Gio Gonzalez may fit in

Nats not ready to reveal playoff rotation, how Gio Gonzalez may fit in

Just because the Los Angeles Dodgers have released their playoff rotation plans for the NL Division Series, doesn't mean the Nationals are ready to do the same.

Manager Dusty Baker remained coy about who will start for the Nats opposite Clayton Kershaw, Rich Hill and Kenta Maeda. He doesn't see any reason to do so until he absolutely has to.

"Just because they did it doesn't mean we've gotta do it. Hey man, they can do what they want to do. I don't really see a point in releasing it so early," he said. "That's nobody's business right now. We'll tell you when we tell you."

[RELATED: Dodgers set rotation for playoff series against Nationals]

Okay, fair enough. We already know who will be pitching Game 1, barring something extraordinary. Max Scherzer will be getting the ball for that one. The same for Tanner Roark in Game 2.

Game 3 is where it gets interesting, though lefty Gio Gonzalez is emerging as the favorite there. GM Mike Rizzo dropped that hint on 106.7 The Fan on Wednesday morning. That would leave Joe Ross for Game 4, unless the Nats opt to pitch Scherzer on short rest, which they have indicated they don't want to do.

"It's probably no secret anyways, other than when you get past No. 2 and 3," Baker said. "Gio's penciled in anyway."

So, when will the Nationals announce their rotation? Technically, they can wait until next week, as playoff rosters don't have to be revealed until the morning of Game 1.

"We haven't talked about it yet. We have to talk about it as a staff before we let you guys know. We'll probably do that on Friday, then we'll let you know," Baker said.

Baker circled back to Gonzalez on Wednesday with the lefty set to make his final regular season start later that night. Gonzalez has reverted back to inconsistency with 14 earned runs allowed in 19 1/3 innings across his last four starts. That followed a stretch of 11 outings from the beginning of July through August where he had a 3.16 ERA.

Baker is preferring to look at Gonzalez with glass half-full optimism as the team enters the postseason.

"Let's not expect bad out of Gio. I'm expecting good out of Gio. I told him when the season started that he was the main key to this ballclub. I didn't know he would be the main key at this point in time coming into these playoffs, but Gio can put him and us on the map with the way he performs," he said.

Gonzalez does have a strong track record against the Dodgers, who happen to feature a lefty-heavy lineup. Gonzalez held them to one run through six innings back in July. And since 2012, he has eight runs in 32 innings against L.A. Certainly, Baker and the Nats would like some more of that.

[RELATED: Podcast: Can Nationals win without Wilson Ramos?]

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