The Dodgers' Chris Capuano takes on the Nationals' Ross Detwiler in the series finale after their teams split Wednesday's doubleheader.
In the first game, the Nationals earned win No. 90 on the season and became the first team this season to reach that mark. They need just one more victory to clinch a playoff spot, and Detwiler will try to earn in 10th win in the process.
Regardless, manager Davey Johnson is more interested in winning the National League East.
"The only thing that means anything to me is when we clinch the [division]. That's the only thing I'm concerned with," Johnson said. "[The magic number to clinch is] starting at nine. That's good. We are going to get it down to eight. Whatever number that is, it will be my favorite number."
As for the Dodgers, they are just trying to keep pace in the NL Wild Card race with the Cardinals, who are facing the Astros and Cubs this week. Los Angeles trails St. Louis by two games.
With time running out, the team cannot afford to lose series like the one it is wrapping up Thursday. The team built a six-run lead in Wednesday's second game, but the Nationals scored six in the eighth inning to tie it up. Fortunately for the Dodgers, Matt Kemp delivered a homer in the ninth inning to regain the lead.
"At the end of the day, you split and you've got a chance to win the series tomorrow," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "That's what we talked about. We've got five series left, or four after tomorrow. So if we win five series, we're going to take our chances."
Dodgers: Jansen back in bullpen
Closer Kenley Jansen, who had not pitched since Aug. 27 because of a recurrence of an irregular heartbeat, is back and able to be used down the stretch for the Dodgers. He didn't appear in either game during Wednesday's doubleheader.
Jansen compiled 25 saves and a 2.54 ERA as the Dodgers' closer this season before being temporarily shut down to take blood-thinning medication and tend to the problem. He came off the medicine late last week and it has since cleared his system.
"I'm just excited," Jansen said. "It's a pennant race going on right now, so that brings the excitement. I just want to get out there and have fun again."
Nationals: Zimmerman gets cortisone shot
Third baseman Ryan Zimmerman got a cortisone shot in his right shoulder, his fourth of the season, on Wednesday.
Despite the shot, he still started both games in Wednesday's doubleheader and finished 2-for-6. His last cortisone shot came on June 24, and he hit .332 with 19 home runs, 62 RBIs and a .994 OPS in his next 75 games.
Johnson announced that Zimmerman will have minor surgery after the season, but he should be back for Spring Training.
"He is playing great as far as I'm concerned," Johnson said. "The results from the [last cortisone shot was] so good and he felt so much better."
Capuano has struck out 43 in 46 innings against the Nationals in his career.
Wednesday's doubleheader was the Dodgers' first since April 27, 2010, when they faced the Mets at Citi Field.