Dream11 Fantasy Baseball: Nationals at Braves

Dream11 Fantasy Baseball: Nationals at Braves

This article is part of our Dream11 Fantasy Baseball series.

Washington Nationals (12-23) at Atlanta Braves (22-14)

Friday, September 4th, 4:10 PM EDT

Projected Starters

RHP Austin Voth (0-4, 7.99 ERA) vs LHP Tommy Milone (1-4, 5.68 ERA)

Game Preview

The Nationals are the reigning MLB World Series champions, but they are not expected to reach the postseason in 2020 – even with an expanded 16-team playoff format – given their poor record to date. The Braves are a completely different story and have performed according to expectations, and they lead the NL East while sitting comfortably eight games above the .500 threshold. Atlanta also has the edge in the pitching matchup with lefty Tommy Milone, who delivered a poor effort in his Braves debut after being acquired from the Baltimore Orioles, against Austin Voth, who owns an ERA of nearly 8.00 as he is yet to win a game after seven straight starts. Voth lasted just two innings in his previous outing.

Injuries

Atlanta Braves

Ronald Acuna - Day-To-Day - Hamstring

9/2 1:13 PM EST - Acuna (hamstring) is feeling good despite being out of the lineup Wednesday and is expected to return Friday against the Nationals, 680 The Fan Atlanta reports. Acuna sits for the third straight day with right hamstring tightness Wednesday, but it appears as though he's essentially over the issue. He went through a full workout Tuesday without issues, but sitting Wednesday buys him two extra days to heal, as the Braves have a scheduled off day Thursday.

Ozzie Albies - 10-Day IL

Washington Nationals (12-23) at Atlanta Braves (22-14)

Friday, September 4th, 4:10 PM EDT

Projected Starters

RHP Austin Voth (0-4, 7.99 ERA) vs LHP Tommy Milone (1-4, 5.68 ERA)

Game Preview

The Nationals are the reigning MLB World Series champions, but they are not expected to reach the postseason in 2020 – even with an expanded 16-team playoff format – given their poor record to date. The Braves are a completely different story and have performed according to expectations, and they lead the NL East while sitting comfortably eight games above the .500 threshold. Atlanta also has the edge in the pitching matchup with lefty Tommy Milone, who delivered a poor effort in his Braves debut after being acquired from the Baltimore Orioles, against Austin Voth, who owns an ERA of nearly 8.00 as he is yet to win a game after seven straight starts. Voth lasted just two innings in his previous outing.

Injuries

Atlanta Braves

Ronald Acuna - Day-To-Day - Hamstring

9/2 1:13 PM EST - Acuna (hamstring) is feeling good despite being out of the lineup Wednesday and is expected to return Friday against the Nationals, 680 The Fan Atlanta reports. Acuna sits for the third straight day with right hamstring tightness Wednesday, but it appears as though he's essentially over the issue. He went through a full workout Tuesday without issues, but sitting Wednesday buys him two extra days to heal, as the Braves have a scheduled off day Thursday.

Ozzie Albies - 10-Day IL - Wrist

8/30 2:22 PM EST - Manager Brian Snitker said Sunday that Albies (wrist) still hasn't taken batting practice on the field, David O'Brien of The Athletic reports. Albies recently resumed swinging as he continues to rehab from a right-wrist bone contusion. However, his lack of batting practice so far in his recovery signals that he will require more time prior to rejoining the major-league roster. Johan Camargo should continue to see increased playing time at second base while Albies is sidelined.

Cole Hamels - 60-Day IL - Triceps

8/30 2:21 PM EST - Hamels (triceps) tossed a bullpen session Sunday, but he remains without a clear timeline for a return from the 45-day injured list, David O'Brien of The Athletic reports. The side session was Hamels' second since he was shut down during summer camp with triceps tendinitis. The veteran southpaw was merely expected to be a back-end piece in the Atlanta rotation in 2020, but his potential late-September return looms larger these days with Mike Soroka (Achilles) done for the season and with the likes of Mike FoltynewiczSean NewcombKyle Wright and Touki Toussaint having all flamed out as potential starting options.

Felix Hernandez - Out - Opt Out

7/4 7:58 PM EST - Hernandez will opt out of the 2020 season due to concerns regarding COVID-19, according to his agent, Wilfredo Polidor. The veteran right-hander was included on the team's 60-player roster pool and was competing with Sean Newcomb for a spot in the starting rotation, but he'll elect to sit out the 60-game season to help protect himself and his family, per Jon Heyman of MLB Network. Hernandez joins the growing list of players who have opted out, including David PriceRyan ZimmermanWelington Castillo and Joe RossKyle Wright figures to be the next man up to compete for a rotation spot for Atlanta.

Philip Pfeifer - 60-Day IL - Elbow

7/21 8:42 AM EST - Pfeifer was placed on the 45-day injured list Tuesday with a bone contusion in his left elbow, 680 The Fan Atlanta reports. Pfeifer didn't seem likely to fill a significant role in the Braves' bullpen this season, as he's a 28-year-old who's yet to reach the majors. He'll now be ineligible to make his debut until early September at the earliest.

Mike Soroka - 60-Day IL - Achilles

8/27 7:54 AM EST - Soroka (Achilles) thinks he could be ready to pitch by Opening Day next season, David O'Brien of The Athletic reports. The right-hander noted that Adam Wainwright was able to return and pitch in the playoffs roughly five months after surgery to repair his torn Achilles tendon back in 2015, but Wainwright's injury was to his landing leg and not the leg he pushes off with, which presents an extra wrinkle in Soroka's recovery. The 23-year-old also said he plans to use his rehab period to make some mechanical tweaks to his delivery. He'll be in a cast or boot for four months post-surgery, so he likely won't have a clear timetable for his return to the mound until that gets removed, but Soroka would still have about three more months after that to get into shape for the projected start of spring training in 2021.

Jeremy Walker - 60-Day IL - Shoulder

6/26 11:36 AM EST - Walker was placed on the 45-day injured list Friday with a right shoulder impingement. The 25-year-old suffered the injury early in spring camp and was never provided an official timetable for his return, but he clearly needs more time to recover. Walker made his big-league debut in 2019 and allowed two runs over 9.1 innings, but it's unclear if he'll be able to play during the shortened 2020 season.

Jacob Webb - 60-Day IL - Shoulder

7/21 8:30 AM EST - Webb was placed on the 45-day injured list with a right shoulder strain Tuesday, 680 The Fan Atlanta reports. Webb could have played a role in Atlanta's bullpen this season, as he produced a strong 1.39 ERA in his 32.1-inning debut last year, but he'll now be sidelined for at least the majority of the campaign. It's not clear when he's expected to return, but he won't be eligible to do so until early September.

Washington Nationals

Tres Barrera - Suspension - Suspension

7/25 8:22 AM EST - Barrera was suspended 80 games Saturday after testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug, Mark Zuckerman of MASNSports.com reports. Barrera wasn't expected to serve on the Nationals' major-league roster this season, but he'll be forced to sit out the entire 2020 campaign and part of next season. The catcher played most of the 2019 season with Double-A Harrisburg, where he hit .249/.323/.381 with eight home runs and 46 RBI.

Welington Castillo - Out - Opt Out

7/22 9:53 AM EST - The Nationals placed Castillo (opt out) on the restricted list July 4. Washington made the transaction official one day after manager Dave Martinez told the media that Castillo became the third player to sit out the 60-game season. Castillo joined the Nationals in January on a one-year deal, so he'll head to the open market at the conclusion of the 2020 campaign.

Starlin Castro - 60-Day IL - Wrist

8/29 5:17 PM EST - Castro (wrist) was transferred to the 45-day injured list Saturday. The 30-year-old fractured his right wrist Aug. 14 and elected to undergo surgery shortly thereafter. Castro hasn't been provided an official timetable for his return, but he won't be eligible to be activated until the end of September.

Mason Denaburg - Out - Shoulder

7/7 6:32 AM EST - Denaburg (shoulder) said Tuesday that he expects to resume throwing bullpen sessions in the next three weeks, Byron Kerr of MASNSports.com reports. The 2018 first-round pick has been pleased thus far with how he's progressed since undergoing arthroscopic right shoulder surgery last October. Denaburg plans to gradually increase his long-toss distance off flat ground through the end of July, and then get back on the mound for the first time since last summer. If the 20-year-old can steer clear of any major setbacks in his throwing program during the upcoming offseason, he should head into the 2021 minor-league season at full strength.

Adam Eaton - Day-To-Day - Knee

9/3 5:44 PM EST - Eaton left Thursday's loss to the Phillies after jamming his knee on first base in the fifth inning, Jesse Dougherty of The Washington Post reports. Eaton was running out a sacrifice bunt when he jammed his knee and was later replaced by Michael Taylor. It is not yet clear if the outfielder will be forced to miss any time beyond Thursday, so for the time being he can be considered day-to-day.

Roenis Elias - 60-Day IL - Forearm

8/13 11:21 AM EST - Nationals manager Dave Martinez said Thursday that Elias felt renewed pain in his left forearm during a recent throwing session, Jesse Dougherty of The Washington Post reports. Elias opened the season on the 45-day injured list with a left flexor strain, but the Nationals were optimistic that the injury would keep him sidelined for the minimum amount of time. Now that Elias has experienced a setback in his throwing program, the team no longer appears to be counting on the southpaw being ready to go when he's first eligible for activation in early September. With two other lefty relievers (Sean Doolittle and Sam Freeman) joining Elias on the injured list Thursday, Seth Romero is the last southpaw left standing in the Washington bullpen.

Sam Freeman - 60-Day IL - Elbow

8/14 4:36 PM EST - Freeman (elbow) was transferred to the 45-day injured list Friday, Brittany Ghiroli of The Athletic reports. Freeman was placed on the injured list with a left flexor mass strain Thursday, but the injury was apparently more serious than originally thought as he'll now miss the remainder of the regular season. The southpaw tossed five scoreless innings across seven appearances this season but struggled to limit baserunners with a 1.80 WHIP.

Steven Fuentes - Suspension - Suspension

7/16 5:20 PM EST - Fuentes was cleared to train and will be headed to Fredericksburg on Thursday, Jesse Dougherty of The Washington Post reports. Fuentes and Joan Adon both will head to Fredericksburg to join their teammates and begin training for the upcoming regular season. Washington added Fuentes to their 60-man player pool earlier this summer to ensure that he will finish serving his 50-game suspension when the 2021 season arrives. The 23-year-old was having a breakout 2019 campaign before testing positive for a banned stimulant, posting a 2.69 ERA, 1.23 WHIP and 63:15 K:BB across 63.2 innings for Double-A Hagerstown.

Javy Guerra - 10-Day IL - Hamstring

9/2 3:27 PM EST - Guerra was placed on the 10-day injured list Wednesday with a left hamstring strain, Mark Zuckerman of MASNSports.com reports. The 34-year-old sustained the injury during Tuesday's contest as he delivered 14 of his 30 pitches for strikes over 1.2 scoreless innings. Guerra will be eligible to be activated Sept. 12, but it's unclear when he's expected to return from the injured list.

Seth Romero - 10-Day IL - Hand

8/26 11:23 AM EST - Romero will undergo surgery to put a pin in his broken non-throwing (right) hand, Jesse Dougherty of The Washington Post reports. With it being his non-throwing hand, he will be able to participate in a throwing program while he recovers from the procedure. It is unclear how long he will be out, but he could miss the rest of the season. Romero suffered the injury when he used his hand to break his fall down some stairs.

Joe Ross - Out - Opt Out

6/29 12:16 PM EST - Ross is expected to opt out of joining the Nationals for the 2020 season, sources tell Brittany Ghiroli of The Athletic. Ross is the second known player who is expected to forgo playing in 2020 due to concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic after Diamondbacks pitcher Mike Leake announced his intentions earlier Monday. As a result, Ross will forgo his $1.5 million salary for 2020 before heading into his final year of salary arbitration in 2021. Ross had been a leading candidate for the fifth spot in the Nationals' rotation, but his decision to sit out the season could lead to more starting opportunities for Austin Voth and Erick Fedde.

Adrian Sanchez - 7-Day IL - Achilles

6/29 9:40 AM EST - Updating a previous report, the Nationals relayed Monday that Sanchez (Achilles) was placed on the minor-league injured list and isn't included as part of the big club's 60-man player pool, Jesse Dougherty of The Washington Post reports. The Nationals had previously announced Sunday that Sanchez had been placed on the 60-day injured list after tearing his right Achilles' tendon in a workout a few weeks ago. However, because he was optioned to Double-A Harrisburg in late March before he suffered the injury, he'll revert to the minor-league IL rather than the MLB team's IL. Unfortunately for Sanchez, the transaction means he won't be eligible for major-league payment and service time while he recovers from surgery that will keep him sidelined throughout the 2020 season, and likely, a decent chunk of the 2021 campaign. The move still leaves one spot open on the 40-man roster for the Nationals, though the team won't be extended an extra spot in the 60-man player pool to replace Sanchez.

Stephen Strasburg - 60-Day IL - Hand

8/23 2:11 PM EST - Strasburg will undergo surgery Wednesday to address the carpal tunnel neuritis in his right hand, Jessica Camerato of MLB.com reports. The 32-year-old has already effectively been ruled out for the season after being transferred to the 45-day injured list Saturday, and it's now just a matter of him going under the knife and beginning the rehab process. Strasburg had the nerve issue crop up before his first start of the season in July, and he returned a couple weeks later before again shutting things down. The right-hander is expected to be ready to go for the start of spring training next year.

Austen Williams - Out - Elbow

9/3 1:05 PM EST - Williams underwent Tommy John surgery in early August, Brittany Ghiroli of The Athletic reports. He pitched in 12 MLB games from 2018 through 2019, but never had much success. As a member of the 40-man roster, Williams would have been a bullpen option for the Nationals this summer, but now he may not be game ready until the start of the 2022 season.

Ryan Zimmerman - Out - Opt Out

6/29 12:31 PM EST - Zimmerman informed the Nationals on Monday that he has opted out of playing in the 2020 season, Brittany Ghiroli of The Athletic reports. Zimmerman's decision comes less than a week after he outlined his concerns about how playing during the COVID-19 pandemic could compromise the immune systems of his wife and newborn baby in an essay posted by the Associated Press. Along with Zimmerman, teammate Joe Ross has also elected not to play in 2020, leaving the Nationals with less depth at first base and in the rotation, respectively. With Zimmerman out of the mix, the Nationals could lean more heavily on Howie Kendrick as the primary platoon mate at first base with the left-handed-hitting Eric Thames. Zimmerman will forgo his $6.25 million salary in 2020 and hit free agency in the offseason, but it's unclear if the soon-to-be 37-year-old will have interest in resuming his career in 2021.

Braves Expected Lineup

SP - Tommy Milone

1. Ronald Acuna

2. Dansby Swanson

3. Freddie Freeman

4. Marcell Ozuna

5. Travis d'Arnaud

6. Nick Markakis

7. Adam Duvall

8. Austin Riley

9. Johan Camargo

Nationals Expected Lineup

SP - Austin Voth

1. Adam Eaton

2. Trea Turner

3. Asdrubal Cabrera

4. Juan Soto

5. Howie Kendrick

6. Yan Gomes

7. Luis Garcia

8. Josh Harrison

9. Victor Robles

Top Picks From Each Team

Marcell Ozuna, Braves: Ozuna is playing on a one-year contract with the Braves and his value has skyrocketed, as the veteran outfielder has been one of the most consistent bats in the Atlanta lineup day in and day out. Ozuna went 2-for-4 with a home run, a walk, two RBI and a run scored Wednesday against the Red Sox. One game after blasting three home runs, Ozuna stayed hot at the plate by slugging a solo home run Wednesday. He now has 12 long balls on the season. Besides his power production, Ozuna has collected at least one hit in 14 of his last 15 games, during which he's slugged eight home runs while also collecting 20 RBI and scoring 12 runs. Overall, he's maintained a .301/.390/.624 line across 154 plate appearances.

Juan Soto, Nationals: Soto has three multi-hit games in his last five appearances and has been one of the top offensive threats for the Nationals now that he's moved to the cleanup role. He's hit safely in seven of Washington's last 10 games and owns a .333/.435/.718 slash line with four homers and 10 RBI in 39 at-bats during that stretch.

Captaincy Options

  1. Marcell Ozuna
  2. Ronald Acuna
  3. Juan Soto
  4. Trea Turner

Dream11 Team

P – Tommy Milone

C – Tyler Flowers

IF – Freddie Freeman

IF – Trea Turner

IF – Carter Kieboom

IF – Eric Thames

OF – Marcell Ozuna (C)

OF – Ronald Acuna (VC)

OF – Juan Soto

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Juan Pablo Aravena
30-year-old sports analyst and journalist. Fan of every single sport on this earth. Enjoys a good beer, some good food, and good company. NBA, MLB, NFL, NHL and soccer fan.
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