Washington Nationals Series Preview: Nationals-Marlins (4/24-4/26)

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Apr 19, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher

Stephen Strasburg

(37) throws to the Philadelphia Phillies during the third inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit:

Brad Mills


Saturday: Stephen Strasburg (1-1, 4.50 ERA) vs. Tom Koehler (1-2, 6.75 ERA), 4:10 pm EST, MASN

Stephen Strasburg is coming off a great outing against the Phillies, when he went 7.1 innings and only gave up one earned run for his first win of the season. He was throwing his fastball through the plate, which is when he is most effective. The weather conditions were perfect for a Strasburg start as well–not too hot, too cold or too humid.

Strasburg usually pitches very well against the Marlins (9-5, 3.44 ERA in 19 starts). Pitching in their indoor, temperature controlled stadium doesn’t hurt him either. He is not one of those pitchers that is bothered by pitching indoors as some are. Even when pitching outdoors in their old stadium, Strasburg usually found a way to beat the Marlins.

Koehler started the season well, only giving up two earned runs in each of his first two starts against the Braves. However, his last start against the Mets was terrible. He was pitching fine until the fourth inning, but then the wheels fell off. He gave up seven earned runs in the fourth inning while only recording one out. He became hittable and the Mets took advantage.

It’s early in the season and it is certainly too soon to tell if these pitcher’s last starts will carry over to this game. If you could say that, the advantage clearly would be with Strasburg. Koehler will probably right his ship and not implode again. If he does, the Nationals hitters have to take advantage and push runs across the plate.

Strasburg’s record against the Marlins in his career indicates that he usually pitches well against the Fish. However, he either has a really good outing (less than four earned runs, and often no earned runs), or he is dreadful (6-7 earned runs).

The advantage is with the Nationals for this matchup. However, if Strasburg has one of his rare implosions against the Marlins and Koehler reverts to form, the Nationals could easily lose this game.

Next: Gonzalez vs. Haren