Last night, the Nationals got the party started early as they scored 4 runs in the top of the 1st inning. The Padres starter Despaigne didn't even get an out until the 6th batter of the game when Wilson Ramos grounded into a double play, but even that allowed a run to cross the plate. Ian Desmond would come across the plate one more time after that double play to put a bow on a big inning. The Nationals had a big 3rd inning too, then tacked on a few more runs over the course of the game. Jordan Zimmermann had everything firing on all cylinders last night as well, going 6 innings, striking out 6, and allowing only 1 walk. It goes without saying he gave up no runs, but he did scatter 6 hits. Regardless of the hits, none of them crossed the plate and that is what is important. Tonight, Max Scherzer will face off with Andrew Cashner in the 3rd game of the 4 game set.
Scherzer has been amazing this season, with stellar numbers across the board. Every time he starts a game the team has a very good chance to win. He's been an absolute work horse, too having only gone less than 7 innings once this season and the only time he's allowed more than 3 runs was when Giancarlo Stanton took him deep. I don't even know if that counts, that guy tags every pitcher on the planet with a long drive. The Padres haven't seen a whole lot of the Nationals right hander, but what they have seen of him has been pretty unimpressive. Hopefully this will be a preview of what tonight's game will be like.
Scherzer vs. Current Padres
Cashner has lost 6 of his 7 decisions this year, but his ERA and FIP tell another story. His FIP isn't astronomical at 4.35 and his ERA is a respectable 3.07. His 9.2 K/9 and 2.3 BB/9 are quite good as well. He figures to give the Nationals a good run for their money in the matchup tonight, but if his luck will continue to suck that'd be just fine. Casher has done a good job of going deep into games, having gone to at least the 6th inning in all except one of his games this year. Cashner is a perfect example of why the W/L record is one of the more useless stats and even though he hasn't seen a lot of the current Nationals lineup, what he has seen of them he has handled well. Perhaps tonight will be the night he gets luck back on his side, but let's hope not.
Cashner vs. Current Nationals