Washington Nationals Series Preview: Nats at Mets (7/31-8/2)

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Jul 26, 2015; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) pitches during the first inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

Joe Ross (2-3, 2.03) vs. Jacob deGrom (10-6, 2.05) – 7:10 PM ET, MASN

For the third consecutive outing, Joe Ross goes up against a pitcher that is one of the leading candidates for the Cy Young award. Despite facing quality pitching, Ross has handled himself well. In his last start against the Pirates on July 26, he went six innings, gave up three runs on five hits, struck out seven, and walked one on 78 pitches.

Since the 22-year-old right-hander made his return to the rotation, he has given up five runs over 11.1 innings, but he has been able to keep the Nats in every game that he pitches in. He has continued to show great control all season long as he has walked only three batters in 34.2 innings.

He did pitch well against deGrom back on July 21 when he gave up only one run through the first six innings. However, he allowed the first two runners of the inning to reach base and Aaron Barrett gave up a pinch-hit two-run single to Eric Campbell, which led to Ross getting the loss. Ross did strike out four batters and did not walk one in the loss.

When you talk about Jacob deGrom, he continues to show why he is the ace of this Mets rotation. He went up against Zack Greinke and his 43.2 inning scoreless streak last time out and he got the better of him. Against the Dodgers on July 26, he went 7.2 innings, gave up no runs on three hits, struck out eight, and walked two in a no-decision.

In four starts this month, the 27-year-old right-hander has given up a combined total of five runs. Over his last three starts, he has 26 strikeouts to three walks. Currently, deGrom’s ERA of 2.05 is second in the National League, behind only Greinke and his 1.37.

On July 21, deGrom went six innings, gave up two runs on three hits, struck out eight, and did not walk a batter in the win over the Nats. The only mistake he made came in the bottom of the fifth inning when Wilson Ramos hit a two-rum homer to right.

Against the Nationals, deGrom is 1-2 with a 3.86 ERA in four career starts (1-2, 3.63 this season). Ramos is 3-for-8 against him with a double, the aforementioned home run, and four RBI’s.

Advantage: While Ross has been able to hold his own against some of the best, deGrom is on too good of a roll right now. Yes, the Nationals have had success against him, but deGrom has shown great control of late and has become the ace ahead of Matt Harvey. Plus, he has a 1.48 ERA in ten home starts this season. The Mets take the second game of this series.

Next: Sunday's Matchup