Washington Nationals at Marlins Series Preview (5/20-5/22)
Tanner Roark (2-3, 3.10 ERA) vs. Justin Nicolino (2-1, 3.75) – 7:10 p.m ET, broadcast on MASN
Both of these pitchers took the ball in last Saturday’s doubleheader, but they did not face each other. Roark started game two and had a rough outing against the Marlins. He went five innings, gave up seven runs on eight hits, struck out five, and walked three on 115 pitches in a loss.
The seven runs Roark gave up against the Marlins were the most he has given up in any start this season. Plus, he continued his streak of walking two or more batters in every start this season as he has 20 on the season. Roark has had a good year so far, but he still can’t figure out how to beat the Marlins.
In three starts against Miami this year, he is 0-3 with a 8.40 ERA, has given up 14 runs in 15 innings, and Miami is hitting .353 against him as a team. Marcell Ozuna is 4-for-9 against him this year with a triple and four RBI’s.
Nicolino got the start in game one of the doubleheader against Stephen Strasburg. He went 4.2 innings, gave up four runs on five hits, struck out one, and walked five on 86 pitches as he picked up his first loss of the season.
After shutting out the Dodgers in his first start of the year, Nicolino has given up ten runs in his last three starts. Plus, he is not a pitcher who is going to strike many batters out (four strikeouts in four games). Jayson Werth, who turns 37 today, is 3-for-5 against Nicolino in his career with a double and three RBI’s.
Prediction: Even though the Washington Nationals had success against Nicolino last week and are coming off the great game from their offense against the Mets last night, it’s tough for me to trust Roark when he has struggled so much against the Marlins this year. Miami picks up the win in the series opener.
Next: Tomorrow's Matchup