For the first time since the Nationals arrived in Washington the Beltway Series with the Baltimore Orioles is relevant, and most consider it the premier series this weekend in baseball.
Both the O's and the Nats sit at the top of their divisions despite injuries and playing in tough divisions. For the first time ever, Baltimore and Washington will meet in a series when both teams are serious playoff contenders.
The baseball culture in both cities has been changed thanks to veteran managers Buck Showalter in Baltimore and former Orioles' skipper Davey Johnson in Washington. Both front offices have pushed all the right buttons—-with the exceptions of the Jayson Werth and Tsuyoshi Wada contracts—over the past few seasons to build exciting rosters capable of competing day in and day out.
All of baseball is taking notice as these two up-and-coming clubs meet this weekend in D.C., and here is a look at what factors will play a role on this weekend series.