NL Division Series Game 3: Nationals vs. Cardinals

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See you tomorrow for Game 4

(Alex Brandon / AP)

Well, that wasn’t exactly the way Nationals wanted to welcome playoff baseball back to D.C. Edwin Jackson got shelled, the bullpen didn’t perform much better and once again the lineup failed to generate hits with runners on base.

Now the team with the best record in the regular season must regroup before a do-or-die Game 4 back at Nationals Park on Thursday at 4:07 p.m. And as poorly as the played today, a win would even the series and put the ball back in the hands of Gio Gonzalez for a one-game playoff at home.

The Nats will send Ross Detwiler (10-8, 3.40 ERA) to the mound to face Game 1 loser Kyle Lohse (16-3, 2.86), and there’s a good chance Washington will makes a change or two to its anemic lineup.

“The momentum is only as good as the last game,” MASN analyst F.P. Santangelo said after Wednesday’s game. “If you win tomorrow, if you win Game 4, then you have your ace going. So tomorrow is everything.”

Yes. Yes it is.

By Matt Brooks