|WASHINGTON ( STRASBURG )|
PITTSBURGH ( LOCKE )
|955||WASHINGTON||-135||Ov 7,-105||-140||Ov 7,-110|
|956||PITTSBURGH||+125||Un 7,-115||+130||Un 7,-110|
|vs Left-handed Starters||3-3||-0.8||2-2||3.7||0.222||0.277||3.7||0.239||0.295|
|Past 7 Games||3-4||-0.6||2-4||2.4||0.203||0.267||3.3||0.244||0.306|
|vs Right-handed Starters||13-8||+7.7||12-9||4.7||0.260||0.318||4.2||0.237||0.320|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||+2.2||6-1||5.1||0.268||0.321||5.6||0.281||0.355|
|4/20/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||@ NY METS||HEFNER(R)||7-6||W||-140||7.5 un||O||7||3||0||7||7||0|
|4/21/2013||ZIMMERMANN(R)||@ NY METS||GEE(R)||0-2||L||-130||7.5 un||U||4||6||3||4||7||0|
|4/22/2013||HAREN(R)||ST LOUIS||MILLER(R)||2-3||L||+105||7.5 un||U||5||6||0||8||7||1|
|4/23/2013||DETWILER(L)||ST LOUIS||WAINWRIGHT(R)||0-2||L||+110||7 ov||U||5||6||0||8||5||0|
|4/24/2013||STRASBURG(R)||ST LOUIS||GARCIA(L)||2-4||L||-155||7 ev||U||7||6||1||9||5||0|
|4/29/2013||STRASBURG(R)||@ ATLANTA||TEHERAN(R)||2-3||L||-125||7 ov||U||10||6||0||7||6||0|
|4/30/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||@ ATLANTA||HUDSON(R)||1-8||L||105||7 ov||O||3||4||1||12||10||0|
|5/1/2013||ZIMMERMANN(R)||@ ATLANTA||MAHOLM(L)||2-0||W||125||7 un||U||3||3||0||2||2||0|
|5/2/2013||HAREN(R)||@ ATLANTA||MEDLEN(R)||3-1||W||140||7.5 un||U||8||10||0||5||5||1|
|5/3/2013||DETWILER(L)||@ PITTSBURGH||BURNETT(R)||1-3||L||120||7 ov||U||7||6||0||9||8||1|
|5/4/2013||STRASBURG(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||LOCKE(L)|| |
|5/5/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||@ PITTSBURGH||RODRIGUEZ(L)|| |
|5/10/2013||DETWILER(L)||CHICAGO CUBS||SAMARDZIJA(R)|| |
|5/11/2013|| ||CHICAGO CUBS|| || |
|4/22/2013||BURNETT(R)||@ PHILADELPHIA||PETTIBONE(R)||2-3||L||-115||8 un||U||8||4||0||8||8||0|
|4/23/2013||LOCKE(L)||@ PHILADELPHIA||HAMELS(L)||2-0||W||145||7 un||U||7||8||1||4||7||2|
|4/24/2013||RODRIGUEZ(L)||@ PHILADELPHIA||HALLADAY(R)||5-3||W||100||7 ev||O||7||6||1||10||8||0|
|4/25/2013||MCDONALD(R)||@ PHILADELPHIA||LEE(L)||6-4||W||170||7 un||O||14||13||1||7||5||1|
|4/26/2013||SANCHEZ(L)||@ ST LOUIS||LYNN(R)||1-9||L||187||8 un||O||5||10||1||13||7||0|
|4/27/2013||BURNETT(R)||@ ST LOUIS||WESTBROOK(R)||5-3||W||-105||7 ov||O||11||10||0||8||9||0|
|4/28/2013||LOCKE(L)||@ ST LOUIS||MILLER(R)||9-0||W||185||7.5 un||O||13||7||1||3||6||0|
|4/29/2013||RODRIGUEZ(L)||@ MILWAUKEE||GALLARDO(R)||4-10||L||120||8 un||O||5||4||1||13||6||2|
|4/30/2013||MCDONALD(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||ESTRADA(R)||8-12||L||135||8 ov||O||14||6||1||15||9||0|
|5/1/2013||GOMEZ(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||BURGOS(R)||6-4||W||130||9 un||O||9||4||1||7||7||1|
|5/9/2013||LOCKE(L)||@ NY METS||MARCUM(R)|| |
|5/10/2013||RODRIGUEZ(L)||@ NY METS||NIESE(L)|| |
|5/11/2013|| ||@ NY METS|| || |
|WASHINGTON: HITTING: The Nats were among the eight worst teams in the majors in runs (3.88 per game), BA (.242), OBP (.309) and OPS (.691). Much of that had to do with the first two spots in the batting order hitting .285 OBP and .283 OBP respectively. OF ROGER BERNADINA (.301 OBP) and SS IAN DESMOND (.298 OBP) were the regular 1-2 hitters in the order. $126 million OF JAYSON WERTH was also to blame, batting .232 with a meager 58 RBI in 561 at-bats. 3B RYAN ZIMMERMAN also missed two months with an abdominal problem and had a down year with 12 HR and 49 RBI in 101 games. But OF MIKE MORSE had a breakout season, leading the Nats in batting (.303), HR (31) and RBI (95). 1B ADAM LaROCHE suffered a season-ending shoulder injury in June, but should be fully healed. Washington is counting on a pair of talented 24-year-olds to contribute a little more in 2B DANNY ESPINOSA (.236 BA, 21 HR) and C WILSON RAMOS (15 HR in 389 AB). |
STARTING PITCHING: STEPHEN STRASBURG is back fully healed from Tommy John surgery, but will reportedly be limited to 160 innings in 2012. That's still enough time to strike out 150 batters and win a dozen games though. In sending four quality prospects to Oakland, the Nats paid a huge price for GIO GONZALEZ. They hope he can overcome his control issues and become an elite No. 2. Well-traveled EDWIN JACKSON was also brought in to help bolster the rotation. He joins his sixth different club since 2008, but Jackson is just 28 years old and was serviceable after being traded to St. Louis last year (5-2, 3.58 ERA). JORDAN ZIMMERMANN was in the same boat as Strasburg last year, coming off elbow surgery and limited to 161.1 innings. But in that time, he had a team-best 3.18 ERA and 4.0 K-to-BB ratio (124 K, 31 BB). JOHN LANNAN remains the top lefty in the Nats rotation with a team-high 10 wins in 2011. He dominated left-handed hitters last year (.211 BA, 55 K in 185 AB), but still needs to improve his weak 1.4 K-to-BB ratio (106 K, 76 BB).
RELIEF PITCHING: DREW STOREN had a phenomenal first year as a full-time closer, saving 43-of-48 games with a 2.75 ERA, 1.02 WHIP and 74 K in 75.1 innings. His role will remain the same in 2012 once he returns from the 15-day DL (elbow) to start the season. Newcomer BRAD LIDGE was limited to 25 innings because of shoulder problems last year, but he appears to be the closer until Storen returns. The Nats have arguably the best set-up man in the game in TYLER CLIPPARD, who led the majors with 38 holds and posted a 1.83 ERA and 0.84 WHIP for the season. He held opponents to a .162 average and fanned 104 batters in 88.1 innings of work. Lefty SEAN BURNETT saw a huge decline in his numbers, as his ERA rose from 2.14 to 3.81 and his WHIP jumped from 1.14 to 1.32. This was mostly due to a diminishing strikeout rate (8.9 to 5.2 last year).
|PITTSBURGH: HITTING: The Pirates' two-month casual flirtation with competitiveness was cute while it lasted, before this team fizzled to a 72-win season. This team is still years away. But don't blame OF ANDREW McCUTCHEN, who might be the best all-around player in the division. Of all the ballyhooed outfielders from the 2005 draft, he's the one GMs would most want to build around. OF JOSE TABATA, not so much. He's serviceable and has plus speed, but the six-year extension the Pirates gave him was absurd. 2B NEIL WALKER has settled into a respectable place short of stardom. 3B PEDRO ALVAREZ has a lot of uphill climbing to do if he wants to wake up old expectations. He'll compete with 3B CASEY MCGEHEE for a starting role, but it's most likely that Alvarez moves to first base to back up 1B GARRETT JONES. OFs NATE McLOUTH and ALEX PRESLEY are underwhelming choices for the starting left-field spot. SS CLINT BARMES and C ROD BARAJAS would like to thank the Pirates for wildly overpaying them. |
STARTING PITCHING: JEFF KARSTENS looked pretty decent for much of last year. But that's what happens when you get to log 14 percent of your innings against the lowly Astros. Better teams exposed him for the replacement-level guy he is. Contrary to what a lot of bored, lazy sportswriters wanted you to believe last year, CHARLIE MORTON doesn't pitch like Roy Halladay. At all. JAMES McDONALD could still be special if he cut down his walk rate. ERIK BEDARD was a respectable signing. Even if his shoulder acts up, he cost only $4.5 million for a year. If he's healthy, he's still well above-average. KEVIN CORREIA may only be slightly more effective at striking out hitters than a batting tee, but the Pirates are grateful for the innings he eats. BRAD LINCOLN is the designated fill-in if any of the other starters get hurt (cough, Bedard). In the meantime, he's a swing man.
RELIEF PITCHING: Closer JOEL HANRAHAN has been outstanding since first donning a Pirates uniform in 2009, converting 40-of-44 saves with a 1.83 ERA last season. It makes sense for the rebuilding Pirates to move him, but they'll probably keep the hand they were dealt. There isn't another qualified ninth-inning pitcher in this bullpen though. EVAN MEEK was bit by the shoulder bug. His early season was an unqualified disaster, but he turned it around and regained his form once he came back in September. He should be fully healthy again, and a quiet source of a few saves. CHRIS RESOP is another primary set-up man, but he posted a 4.39 ERA and 1.48 WHIP in 2011. DANIEL McCUTCHEN won't be so lucky with his ERA this year if he doesn't lower his walk rate. He's just not a guy to put much faith in.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER NL PREVIEW (WASHINGTON-PITTSBURGH) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Nationals-Pirates Preview* ===========================
By JEFF BARTL STATS Writer
Washington (15-14) at Pittsburgh (16-12), 4:05 p.m. EDT
The Washington Nationals have been so protective of Stephen Strasburg since he entered the majors that even the potential of an injury creates a stir.
After the concern was alleviated earlier in the week, Strasburg seeks to end his five-start winless streak as Washington looks to avoid a third straight loss to the host Pittsburgh Pirates on Saturday.
Since allowing three hits in seven innings of a 2-0 win over Miami on opening day April 1, Strasburg (1-4, 3.13 ERA) has gone winless with a 3.86 ERA while throwing at least 110 pitches four times.
He walked four and gave up two runs in six innings of Washington's 3-2 loss to Atlanta on Monday, and manager Davey Johnson was concerned his ace was experiencing potentially serious arm trouble as he said Strasburg was shaking his arm between pitches more than normal.
The right-hander, though, knew right away there weren't any major problems.
"I'm not missing my next start. I'll tell you that right now," Strasburg said after the game.
General manager Mike Rizzo agreed.
"Stephen had some irritation on his forearm. He's healthy, happy and ready to pitch Saturday," Rizzo told the team's official website Tuesday. "He was seen by the team doctor here in the clubhouse and was given a clean bill of health."
That's good news for the Nationals (15-15), as Strasburg has been dominant in his two career outings versus Pittsburgh. He gave up two runs and four hits while striking out a career-high 14 in seven innings of a 5-2 victory in his first major league start June 8, 2010. He then finished with 13 strikeouts and allowed one earned run in six innings of a 4-2 win May 10.
Washington, though, has dropped four of six after falling 3-1 to the Pirates in Friday's series opener. Danny Espinosa had an RBI single but Ryan Zimmerman went 0 for 4 in his return to the lineup after missing 14 games with a strained left hamstring.
The Nationals have scored three runs or fewer in six straight games.
"I don't know if it's being aggressive early in the count or not, but I do feel we're trying too hard to make things happen," Johnson said. "Everyone just needs to relax a little bit."
Andrew McCutchen has been hitting much better lately for Pittsburgh (17-12), which improved to 16-7 since starting the season 1-5. McCutchen went 3 for 4 with a solo homer Friday and is 8 for 17 with two homers and four RBIs over his last four contests to bump his average up 41 points to .257.
The Pirates, who have taken five of the last seven meetings with the Nationals, will look to win a fifth straight home game as they send Jeff Locke to the mound.
Locke (3-1, 2.83) got off to a rocky start but has been stellar over his last two outings while extending his scoreless streak to 13 innings. He allowed two hits and struck out six in six innings of a 2-0 win over Philadelphia on April 23, then gave up three hits in seven innings of a 9-0 victory over St. Louis on Sunday.
"Locke pitched a great game (Sunday)," catcher Russell Martin told the team's official website. "Getting my pitcher putting up scoreless innings gets us in a place to win."
The left-hander, who had one victory in 10 career starts entering this season, has never faced the Nationals nor any hitter currently on their roster.
|Last Updated: 8/30/2014 3:34:29 PM EST|