|WASHINGTON ( ROARK )|
ST LOUIS ( WAINWRIGHT )
|959||WASHINGTON||+150||Ov 7,-120||+140||Ov 7.5,+110|
|960||ST LOUIS||-160||Un 7,+100||-150||Un 7.5,-130|
|vs Right-handed Starters||59-53||-9.2||58-50||4.0||0.252||0.308||4.0||0.255||0.307|
|Past 7 Games||5-2||+1.6||3-4||4.3||0.248||0.318||2.9||0.227||0.280|
|vs Right-handed Starters||73-42||+18||60-51||5.2||0.276||0.334||3.7||0.251||0.307|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||-0.5||5-2||5.9||0.300||0.370||4.9||0.300||0.350|
|9/9/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||@ NY METS||TORRES(R)||9-0||W||-135||7 un||O||9||6||0||1||3||0|
|9/10/2013||ZIMMERMANN(R)||@ NY METS||GEE(R)||6-3||W||-130||7 ev||O||11||3||2||9||7||0|
|9/11/2013||HAREN(R)||@ NY METS||WHEELER(R)||3-0||W||-115||7.5 ov||U||11||9||0||3||4||0|
|9/12/2013||ROARK(R)||@ NY METS||HARANG(R)||7-2||W||-155||8 ov||O||8||3||0||8||7||0|
|9/23/2013||ROARK(R)||@ ST LOUIS||WAINWRIGHT(R)|| |
|9/24/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||@ ST LOUIS||WACHA(R)|| |
|9/25/2013||ZIMMERMANN(R)||@ ST LOUIS||MILLER(R)|| |
|9/27/2013||STRASBURG(R)||@ ARIZONA||CORBIN(L)|| |
|9/28/2013||HAREN(R)||@ ARIZONA||MCCARTHY(R)|| |
|9/29/2013||ROARK(R)||@ ARIZONA||MILEY(L)|| |
|9/16/2013||LYNN(R)||@ COLORADO||MCHUGH(R)||2-6||L||-150||10 un||U||7||4||0||12||8||0|
|9/17/2013||KELLY(R)||@ COLORADO||NICASIO(R)||11-4||W||-135||10 ov||O||18||12||1||9||9||0|
|9/18/2013||WAINWRIGHT(R)||@ COLORADO||CHATWOOD(R)||4-3||W||-175||9.5 ev||U||10||7||1||12||11||0|
|9/19/2013||WACHA(R)||@ COLORADO||OSWALT(R)||6-7||L||-155||9.5 un||O||12||9||0||21||16||0|
|9/20/2013||MILLER(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||HELLWEG(R)||7-6||W||-190||9.5 un||O||16||12||0||13||8||0|
|9/21/2013||LYNN(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||GALLARDO(R)||7-2||W||-140||8.5 un||O||9||5||0||7||9||1|
|9/22/2013||KELLY(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||PERALTA(R)||4-6||L||-145||8.5 un||O||8||9||3||8||5||0|
|9/27/2013||LYNN(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||WOOD(L)|| |
|9/28/2013||KELLY(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||JACKSON(R)|| |
|9/29/2013||WAINWRIGHT(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||SAMARDZIJA(R)|| |
|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).
|ST LOUIS: HITTING: Alienate and trade your talented young centerfielder for bullpen scraps and a middling, impending free-agent starter. Justify your ludicrous pitching changes by blaming crowd noise and your innocent bullpen coach'and you too could win a World Series! This was Tony La Russa baseball. But he's gone now, as is the all-world Albert Pujols. SS RAFAEL FURCAL liked his short stint in the Show Me State enough to sign up for more. OF CARLOS BELTRAN will hit second after an impressive 2011 campaign during which he produced solid numbers in pitchers' parks amidst weak lineups. 2Bs TYLER GREENE and DANIEL DESCALSO are the latest plucky 'gamer' to play infield at Busch. Resuscitated slugger 1B LANCE BERKMAN shifts to a much more suitable defensive position. OF MATT HOLLIDAY's OPS remains as strong as ever. 3B DAVID FREESE will never have to buy a drink in Missouri again after his postseason heroics. C YADIER MOLINA is a defensive whiz behind the plate and an underrated hitter. OFs ALLEN CRAIG and JON JAY are more suited to platoon roles, but Jay will be starting in center on Opening Day. |
STARTING PITCHING: His stuff isn't nearly what it used to be, and he's more than earned his reputation within the game as a towering crybaby. But on the mound, CHRIS CARPENTER remains ruthlessly effective when he's healthy. But he'll miss the first couple of months of the 2012 campaign due to shoulder problems. ADAM WAINWRIGHT should be ready to go on Opening Day, and has shown every reason to think he'll be his old brilliant self. JAIME GARCIA cannot sustain a sub-2.00 ERA for a full season. He's a mid-rotation starter, but one of the better ones in all of baseball. Did KYLE LOHSE really register a 1.17 WHIP over an entire season? Really? He just doesn't miss enough bats to keep that going. JAKE WESTBROOK stayed healthy for a full season again, which is a relief given his past dalliances with the DL. He's an innings eater who's capable of another dozen wins. LANCE LYNN gives the Cardinals enviable depth in the rotation. He'll probably slide back to the bullpen once Carpenter returns. Uber-prospect SHELBY MILLER could be a second-half call-up.
RELIEF PITCHING: It doesn't look pretty when JASON MOTTE winds up and delivers a pitch, but in the end, results are results. The converted catcher has finally nailed down the closer role that many predicted would be his a few years ago. The only way he loses it this time is if he hurts himself with that painful delivery. FERNANDO SALAS can more than hold his own if that happens. He'll slot into the eighth-inning role, but he provides more of the pitching depth that is a hallmark of this Cardinals team. KYLE McCLELLAN, like Lynn, is serviceable both in relief or in the rotation. But he's better in the former role.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER NL PREVIEW (WASHINGTON-ST LOUIS) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Nationals-Cardinals Preview* =============================
By NICOLINO DIBENEDETTO STATS Writer
Washington (84-72) at St. Louis (91-65), 8:15 p.m. EDT
The St. Louis Cardinals are headed back to the postseason.
The Washington Nationals' chances are nearly over, and they may need to beat Adam Wainwright to keep them alive.
The Nationals will try to solve Wainwright and end a four-game skid to the Cardinals on Monday night.
St. Louis (91-65), which beat Washington (84-72) in last season's division series, is headed back to the playoffs after clinching a spot thanks to the Nationals' 4-2 loss to Miami in the opener of Sunday's doubleheader.
The Cardinals fell 6-4 at Milwaukee on Sunday, but lead Cincinnati and Pittsburgh by two games in the NL Central with six to go in the regular season.
The Nationals are trying to catch the Reds and Pirates, the league's wild-card co-leaders. They trail by five games with six to play after winning the second game of Sunday's twinbill 5-4.
Despite overwhelming odds, the Nationals aren't giving up on the postseason.
"We aren't finished. I take nothing for granted," manager Davey Johnson said. "I still think we got a good shot. We need to win them all. We do. Hey, I've been one strike, two runs down, one strike away, and we've come back. So don't lose the faith."
Facing Wainwright (17-9, 2.98 ERA) isn't likely to help Washington.
The Cardinals ace has won his last two starts against the Nationals, yielding one run with 14 strikeouts in 14 1-3 innings. He beat them again April 23, coming two outs shy of a complete game while fanning nine in a 2-0 road victory.
Wainwright is 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA in his last three starts overall. The right-hander is second in the league in wins, and among the leaders in ERA, strikeouts (209) and WHIP (1.08).
Wainwright allowed three runs in 7 2-3 innings and proved to be just as capable at the plate in Wednesday's 4-3 win at Colorado. He matched his career high with three hits and added two RBIs, one coming on his fourth double of the season.
"I always brag that the starting pitchers are the best athletes on the field," Wainwright said.
Matt Carpenter may feel differently, as he's batting .407 with seven doubles, nine RBIs and 13 runs in the past 14 games. The second baseman homered Sunday and is batting .324 as he chases Colorado's Michael Cuddyer (.334) and Chris Johnson (.329) of Atlanta for the NL batting title.
The Nationals are hoping Tanner Roark (7-0, 1.08) can slow down Carpenter in his first meeting with the Cardinals, and continue his dazzling run.
The rookie right-hander has a 0.95 ERA while winning all three of his starts since being inserted as the fifth starter. He was superb again Tuesday, yielding two hits in seven innings of a 4-0 win over Atlanta.
"It's not smoke and mirrors right now," first baseman Adam LaRoche said. "When you get guys coming down to first talking about how good his stuff is, some really good hitters that are praising him, it says a lot."
|Last Updated: 3/17/2018 10:56:42 PM EST|