The 2024 MLB season is here and the Washington Nationals and Cincinnati Reds will get their campaigns going in Ohio on Thursday. Both teams are in various stages of rebuilds, with the Reds hoping to jump back into the playoffs in 2024. 

The Reds came in third in the NL Central in 2023, while the Nats were stuck in the basement of the NL East. The former is more likely to be competitive this season, but both are primarily looking to continue developing their young stars.

Here now is what you need to know before the Nationals and Reds meet on Opening Day at Great American Ball Park.

Nationals vs. Reds

Date: Thursday, March 28 | Time: 4:05 p.m. ET
Location: Great American Ball Park (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Live stream: Fubo (try for free) | TV: MASN, Bally Sports Ohio
Probable pitchers: RHP Josiah Gray (WSN) vs. RHP Frankie Montas (CIN)
Odds: WSN +130; CIN +110; over/under: 7.5


Nationals: The Nats are on their way out of the rebuild, but they're not quite there yet. Rather than try to compete with the Braves and the Phillies this year, they'll focus on developing their young would-be stars, beginning with Opening Day starter Josiah Gray. Behind him are, among others, CJ Abrams, Lane Thomas and Keibert Ruiz, with Dylan Crews and James Wood waiting in the minors. The improvement for Washington may not show up in the standings, but it must in the player development if they have any hope to climb out of the basement.

Reds: In a weak NL Central, the Reds stand a chance this year. Like the Nationals, they're looking for growth from young stars like Matt McLain (who is on the IL to start the season), Elly De La Cruz, Spencer Steer and Hunter Greene. Rebound years for Jonathan India and Frankie Montas would go a long way too. They probably aren't going to jump 20 games in the win column again, but if everything hits right, they could be in the race.