Aug 11, 2013; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg (37) is congratulated by teammates after throwing a complete game shutout against the Philadelphia Phillies at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Gio And Bumgarner Face Off In Clash Of Struggling 2012 Titans


Almost nobody could have predicted before the season that on August 13th the Nationals, 2012 best MLB record, would be three games below .500 and that the 2012 World Champion San Francisco Giants would be 13 games below the break even mark.  Neither team has come close to meeting the expectations they received after last years success, and both teams find themselves far out of the playoff push.  While the Nationals have some hope as the team is eight games behind the Reds for the second wild card berth, the Giants are all but eliminated and will play the role of spoiler in the pennant race.

Tonight, the teams will send their top left handers to the mound.   After a sweep of the Phillies in which the team hit, pitched and even saw Stephen Strasburg throw his first career shutout, the Nationals hope to continue the momentum and play well for the remaining month and a half of the season.   Gio Gonzalez(7-5, 3.52) will look to lead the Nationals to a victory in the series opener.  With the exception of one clunker of a start against the Detroit Tigers in which he allowed 11 runs in less than four innings, Gio has pitched well all year long.  Take out that awful outing in Mo-Town and Gonzalez would have an ERA below three.

The Giants will send out All-Star left hander Madison Bumgarner(11-7, 2.75) to the mound.  Bumgarner is coming off an outing in which he held the Milwaukee Brewers to just two hits through the first seven innings before sloppy defense (including an error by Bumgarner himself) led to four runs in the eighth.  After the game, Bumgarner called out his team for losing their concentration during games, irking his manager Bruce Bochy.

Lineups:

San Francisco Giants: 52-65

1. Andres Torres, CF

2. Marco Scutaro, 2B

3. Brandon Belt, 1B

4. Buster Posey, C

5. Hunter Pence, RF

6. Pablo Sandoval, 3B

7. Jeff Francoeur, LF

8. Brandon Crawford, SS

9. Madison Bumgarner, LHP

 

Washington Nationals: 57-60

1. Denard Span, CF

2. Anthony Rendon, 2B

3. Ryan Zimmerman, 3B

4. Jayson Werth, RF

5. Ian Desmond, SS

6. Adam LaRoche, 1B

7. Wilson Ramos, C

8. Scott Hairston, LF

9. Gio Gonzalez, LHP

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