By JOHN ROBERTSENThe Washington TimesWASHINGTON, D.C. – A happy holiday weekend for the Washington Nationals, who are riding a nine-game winning streak into the American League Championship Series against the Texas Rangers, with the game on Thursday against the defending champion Boston Red Sox scheduled to kick off a nine game home stand at Nationals Park.
The Nats are now in the playoffs for the second time in three years.
The Rangers will be back in action Wednesday at 1 p.m. and Thursday at 7:05 p.ms. with a rematch of the two games that separated the teams in the Nats first round series against the Dodgers.
It will be a rematch that will likely have the Neds in a tie with the Reds, and a victory would send them back to the NLCS for the first time since 2006.
The game will be played in front of a sellout crowd of 14,839, and the Naps are in seventh place in the NL East and just four games behind the Los Angeles Dodgers.
With the playoffs still two weeks away, it would not be surprising if the Nabs won Thursday.
However, it will not be the only game at Nationals Stadium that night.
The Phillies will host the St. Louis Cardinals, and it will be their first game at the stadium since the Nads clinched the NL West title on Monday.
This is the last of the NL Division Series at Nationals Field.
The next two games, in the Cardinals’ ballpark, will be at home in Arlington and at Chase Field in Chicago.
Both games will be televised on Fox Sports 1 and SportsNet New York, and both are projected to sell out.
The Cardinals have won five of the last six games against the Natives.
The Nationals have won four straight, including a 10-game sweep in Washington last year, and seven of the past nine meetings with the Cardinals, who won the division last year.
This season, the Nags are 13-3 in the series, but are 10-10 overall in the past 20 years.
They have won three of four in Arlington.
The Braves are 9-8 overall in their last 10 games at Nationals.
The Blue Jays are 5-13 overall in all but one of their last seven games.