Nationals to begin 2021 season on Tuesday vs. Braves originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington
The Washington Nationals finally have a date for their first game of the 2021 season: Tuesday, April 6.
MLB announced on Sunday night that the Nationals-Braves game set for Tuesday will go on as scheduled after Washington's start to the season was delayed due to a COVID-19 outbreak.
The game between the two teams scheduled for Monday was postponed as the organization awaited further testing, but with all recent tests coming back negative, the league has deemed it safe for the Nationals to resume baseball activities. The team will practice on Monday.
Washington's season was set to begin last Thursday along with every other team. There was an announcement Wednesday afternoon detailing coronavirus exposure in the organization and on Thursday morning the first game was postponed. The entire series against New York was eventually canceled after contract tracing and more positive tests arose.
As it stands now, the Nationals had 11 players impacted by the outbreak with four testing positive for COVID-19 and the other seven deemed close contacts. All 11 will be unavailable for the contest on Tuesday. The Washington Post's Jesse Dougherty reported that Jon Lester, Kyle Schwarber, Josh Harrison and Alex Avila are among the players involved in the quarantine, though their status in terms of positive test or contact tracing is unknown.
It's unclear what the starting nine for the Nationals will look like on Tuesday, though Max Scherzer -- the scheduled starter on Opening Day -- should get the nod. He was not on the team flight home from spring training in Florida last Monday, returning home with his family instead.
What is known is that after a slight delay the Nats will finally get to kick off their 2021 campaign.