Washington Nationals at Braves Series Preview (8/18-8/21)

Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports /
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Washington Nationals
Aug 15, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer (31) delivers a pitch in the fifth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. The Nationals defeated the Rockies 5-4. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

Max Scherzer (12-7, 2.95) vs. Tyrell Jenkins (2-3, 4.89) – 7:10 p.m, MASN

For the first time in 2016, Scherzer did not complete five innings in his last start against the Rockies. He went four innings, gave up four runs on seven hits, struck out three, and walked two on 97 pitches in a no-decision.

During that start against the Rockies, Scherzer gave up three runs in the first inning and needed 30+ pitches to complete two of the four innings. Plus, the three strikeouts were tied for the fewest he has had in any start this season (April 21 against the Marlins).

Scherzer is 1-0 with a 4.15 ERA in two starts against the Braves this season, which were his first two outings of the season. In his career against Scherzer, Nick Markakis is 7-for-24 (.292) with four doubles and two RBI’s against Scherzer.

Jenkins faced the Washington Nationals last Sunday and he struggled mightily. He went 4.2 innings, gave up seven runs on six hits, struck out one, and walked three on 84 pitches in a loss.

In that start, the Washington Nationals did a great job of getting ahead early as they jumped out to a 3-0 lead against Jenkins en route to a 9-1 win. Plus, it is the fourth time this season that Jenkins only had one strikeout in an outing, whether it is as a starter or a reliever.

Prediction: Even though Scherzer struggled against the Rockies, he has done a good job this season of avoiding back-to-back bad games. Plus, he has not lost back-to-back games this season. If the Nats have the same gameplan as last week against Jenkins, I expect the Nats to get the win here.

Next: Sunday's Matchup