Washington Nationals vs. Philadelphia Phillies Preview (4/26-4/28)
By Ricky Keeler
After sweeping the Minnesota Twins, the Washington Nationals will begin a three game series against the Phillies
It was a wild weekend for the Washington Nationals (14-4) as they found a way to sweep the Minnesota Twins at Nats Park. On Saturday, Tanner Roark struck out 15 Twins in a 2-0 win and on Sunday, the Nats won a 16-inning marathon, which ended on a walk-off home run by Chris Heisey.
At 14-4, the Washington Nationals have their best record through the first 18 games since 2012, when that team started with the same record. The Nats have the best record in baseball and terms of winning percentage and they are on a seven game home winning streak.
Tonight, they will look to extend that winning streak when they begin a three game series against the Philadelphia Phillies (9-10). Earlier this month, the Nats took two out of three from the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park and were a Jonathan Papelbon blown save away from sweeping the series. Plus, Bryce Harper homered in every single game.
Since that weekend series, the Phillies are 3-3 after losing two out of three home games against the Mets and won two out of three road games against the Brewers. So far, third baseman Maikel Franco leads the Phillies in batting average (.296), home runs (five), and RBI’s (13). However, the Phillies’ 62 runs scored are the second fewest in the National League (Braves have 61).
On the mound, the Phillies’ rotation has a 3.82 ERA, which is the fifth lowest ERA in the NL (Nats have the second lowest at 2.38). But, their staff leads the NL in strikeouts (126). That being said, their bullpen ERA of 5.22 is 12th in the NL, even though Jeanmar Gomez is 4-for-4 in save chances.
Here is my breakdown of the three pitching matchups in this series:
Next: Tonight's Matchup