The Nationals, losers of five straight and eight of their last ten, host the Pittsburgh Pirates in the second of a four-game series.

Nick Johnson is hitting .478 the past week with two homers and 12 RBIs. He's getting hot just when the Mets need a first baseman with Carlos Delgado going down to hip surgery. I'm just sayin'.

PITTSBURGH PIRATES (17-21, 6th in NL Central--6.5 games back; three-game win streak)

Morgan - LF
Sanchez - 2B
McLouth - CF
Adam LaRoche - 1B
Moss - RF
Andy LaRoche - 3B
Jaramillo - C
Wilson - SS
Karstens - P

WASHINGTON NATIONALS (11-26-1, 5th in NL East--10 games back; five-game loss streak)

Guzman - SS
Johnson - 1B
Zimmerman - 3B
Dunn - RF
Willingham - LF
Harris - CF
Hernandez - 2B
Nieves - C
Martis - P


PIT: Jeff Karstens (32.0 IP, 1-2, 5.06 ERA, 14 Ks, 13 BBs)
WAS: Shairon Martis (41.2 IP, 5-0, 4.10 ERA, 21 Ks, 17 BBs)

Excellent evening weather, but temperatures may dip fast after sundown. Still very comfortable for late May. First pitch--68F; Last out--61F. 0% chance of rain.