WASHINGTON -- The Nationals didn't waste any time bowing to Mother Nature on a rainy Saturday in the nation's capital. They declared a rainout nearly three hours before Jason Marquis' scheduled first pitch. The Nationals and Brewers will instead try to play a traditional doubleheader on Sunday beginning at 1:35 p.m. ET, and appreciated the opportunity to do something Saturday besides sitting around Nationals Park. "I can wrap my head around a doubleheader," Brewers slugger Prince Fielder said. "But I hate waiting. That's the worst."
The Nationals didn't wait this time, with rain already falling at 10 a.m. ET and the forecast worsening as the day progressed. The outlook was much better for Sunday, when Washington's Marquis and Milwaukee's Yovani Gallardo will match up in the opener, with the Nationals' Livan Hernandez and the Brewers' Marco Estrada set to pitch Game 2, which will begin about 30 minutes after the conclusion of Game 1. Fans holding tickets for Saturday's or Sunday's games will be granted admission to both ends of Sunday's doubleheader. Fans holding Saturday tickets should visit a ticket window at Nationals Park to make an exchange. For both teams, the switch was no big deal. Gallardo was already set to pitch on one extra day of rest Saturday after showing uncharacteristically shaky command in his no-decision against the Cubs last weekend, and now he'll be getting two extra days instead. For Washington, Marquis was in line for an extra day of rest after Saturday's scheduled start. Instead, he simply took that extra day Saturday and will be on a regular schedule for his next start against the Pirates. "This will just kind of put everybody on a normal day," Nationals manager Jim Riggleman said. Gallardo had yet to begin his pregame routine when Saturday's game was called, and he immediately found a partner for a catch on the field. "You try to do it like another day before the start," Gallardo said. He's had a lot of days between his starts. The Brewers were also rained out in Pittsburgh on Tuesday, and manager Ron Roenicke gave all of his starters and extra day of rest. That means Gallardo will have gone a week since pitching last Sunday in Milwaukee. "I've been working on the things I need to be working on between starts, try to stay in that same rhythm," Gallardo said. "There's not much you can do about it. Games are going to get canceled due to rain, so I'll just show up [Sunday] ready to pitch." Hopefully, Mother Nature cooperates.