Top Five Washington Nationals Players to Watch in 2015

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Oct 2, 2014; Baltimore, MD, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Max Scherzer (37) pitches in game one of the 2014 American League divisional series against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

5. Max Scherzer

The Washington Nationals gave Max Scherzer a lot of money to come pitch in DC. To the tune of $210 million deferred over 14 years.

The Nationals are, for the next seven years that he is under club control, going to be looking for similar numbers he put up with the Detroit Tigers.

I am also interested to get to know the guy. That is part of what makes baseball fun to me.

I know the numbers Max Scherzer. The guy who put up a 3.15 ERA and a 2.85 FIP, which is a bit high for his talent level mostly due to some bad defense behind him. Steamer projects him to be almost a 4-win player in 2015, and his strike out rate has been phenomenal at 9.59 K/9 over his career.

But what I don’t know is the personality of Max Scherzer. What kind of a guy he is. That is going to be interesting to watch and learn over the next few months.

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I am also interested in seeing how well Scherzer can keep up his impressive numbers.

It is no secret that after 30 most players, especially power pitchers, start a slow decline. Max Scherzer relies overwhelmingly on his fastball to strike people out and his contact rate on fly balls is not exactly the best. As Scherzer ages, he will have to rely more on offspeed pitches and location – a transition that is difficult to make.

Going into the 2015 season I am excited to get to know Max Scherzer the person and watch his skills transition throughout the season, which makes him my number five player to watch.

Next: Number 4