Washington Nationals Reaction: Joe Ross Impressive In 5-1 Win
Rivero Shutting Down The 8th
Even though Ross was the main story as far as pitching is concerned, you can’t look overlook the job that Felipe Rivero has done late in games for the Nats. In his last ten games, Rivero has given up only one run. Last night, he pitched in his third straight game and was still effective.
Out of the 13 pitches that he threw, nine of them went for strikes and he had two strikeouts. Even though the 24-year-old finished the month of May with a higher ERA (3.65) than in the month of April (3.55). But, his numbers are similar from April except he threw 1/3 of an inning less and he walked one fewer batter.
So far this season, Rivero has showed good command as he has 32 strikeouts and only five walks in 25 innings. He has 22 of those K’s in the eighth inning, which is tied for the third most in the National League, trailing only Brandon Maurer of the Padres (27) and David Phelps of the Miami Marlins (30).
If there’s one thing Rivero needs to work on going forward, it would be his success against left-handed hitters. Lefties this season are hitting .286 against him with four RBI’s and a .366 on-base percentage. As for the right-handed hitters, they are hitting a mere .111 with two home runs and a .172 on-base.
This season, Dusty Baker has relied a lot on Rivero in the late innings and for the most part he has delivered. Usually, we see Baker go with both Shawn Kelley and Rivero in the eighth inning, but Baker has used a lefty solely in the eighth most recently and that decision has paid off so far.
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