Washington Nationals vs. Detroit Tigers Series Preview (5/9/5-11)
Michael Fulmer (1-1, 6.30) vs. Joe Ross (3-1, 1.23) – 7:05 p.m, MASN/MLB Network
Back at the trade deadline last season, Fulmer was acquired in a deal with the Mets that sent Yoenis Cespedes to New York. He was called up to make his Major League debut back on April 29 against the Minnesota Twins and has made only two starts in his career.
In those games, he has gone five innings in each, but he struggled in his last outing against the Indians when he gave up five runs on ten hits and gave up a couple of home runs. The 23-year-old right-hander has an average velocity of 94.6 miles per hour on his fastball (according to Fangraphs) to go with a changeup and slider.
As for Ross, he put up a good showing in his last start against the Cubs, albeit in a losing effort. On Thursday, at Wrigley Field, Ross went six innings, gave up two runs on five hits, struck out nine, and walked two on 103 pitches in a 2-0 defeat.
In that outing, Ross threw 15 first pitch strikes to the 27 batters he faced, but the fourth inning was his main struggle when the Cubs scored two runs after loading the bases with no one out. With that being said, the 22-year-old right-hander has not given up more than two runs in any outing and he leads the Nats with a .198 opponents batting average against.
Prediction: This is a tough matchup to call when you consider that neither team has seen the opposing pitcher and it’s intriguing when you consider both pitchers were taken in the first round of the 2011 MLB Draft. For me, I’m going with Ross because he has more of the track record, but this one could go either way.
Next: Wednesday's Pitching Matchup