Apr 6, 2014; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals second baseman Danny Espinosa (8) bats as Atlanta Braves catcher Gerald Laird (11) and umpire Doug Eddings look on during the fourth inning at Nationals Park. The Nationals won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Washington Nationals at Atlanta Braves preview: Rivalry comes to Turner Field

Update: The Braves have released the lineup for Friday night’s game, and Andrelton Simmons remains absent from the proceedings.

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For the first time this season, pitching was the issue for the Atlanta Braves in a 6-4 defeat on Thursday night, but fortunately, the team sends its de facto ace to the mound on Friday night. Still, nothing comes easy for the Braves over the weekend, as they welcome the red-hot and division-leading Washington Nationals to Turner Field, and the excitement level is high as things get going.

Julio Teheran takes the hill for the Braves, and the young right-hander has been quite good so far in 2014. In his last outing, Teheran beat these same Nationals with a 7-inning, 2-run performance on Saturday, and he has allowed 2 earned runs in both of his outings. To be honest, I don’t think we’ve seen the top end “stuff” from Julio thus far, and his command hasn’t been incredibly good, but when you mix that with big-time results, it’s tough to argue against him. Washington does provide a bit of extra pop in the lineup, but Teheran can certainly navigate the waters if he has it going.

Washington will send 27-year-old right-hander Tanner Roark to the mound against the Braves, and it will be the first time that Atlanta will see him this season. In his lone start of the campaign, Roark pitched 6 quality innings and allowed only 2 runs against the Mets, but that was the Mets (in fairness), and all things aren’t created equal. Still, Roark has been incredibly effective in his short MLB career (1.66 ERA in 59.2 innings), and a hot pitcher is never fun to face.

Here is a look at the particulars for Friday:

Date: April 11, 2014

Start Time: 7:35 p.m.

TV Channel: Fox Sports South

Radio: 680 AM/106.7 FM (Local in Atlanta), Full list of Local Affiliates

Live Stream: MLB.tv (Click Here, $)

Be sure to follow us on Twitter (@ATLBeatBlog) for more information, and check back after the game for a full recap. Sound off in the comments!

Tags: Atlanta Braves

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