Jerad Eickhoff (10-13, 3.68) vs. Max Scherzer (16-7, 2.88) – 7:05 p.m, MASN
On Labor Day against the Miami Marlins, Eickhoff picked up his tenth win of the season. He went six innings, gave up two runs on six hits, and struck out four batters on 89 pitches. Eickhoff has now pitched into the sixth inning in six consecutive outings.
Even though the 26-year-old right-hander went 3-1 in five starts in the month of August, his 4.85 ERA was the highest that he has had in any month this season. Plus, he gave up seven home runs in 29.2 innings.
Against the Washington Nationals on August 30, Eickhoff went six innings, gave up three runs on five hits, struck out four, and walked three in a loss. Jayson Werth is 2-for-6 in his career vs. Eickhoff with a home run and two RBI’s.
Scherzer didn’t have his best outing on Labor Day against the Braves, but it was good enough for the Nats to get the win. He went seven innings, gave up two runs on seven hits, struck out five, and walked two as he won his team high 16th game of the year.
The Washington Nationals ace has won four consecutive starts and he has given up eight runs over his last 29.1 innings. Right now, Scherzer leads the league in strikeouts (243) and has held opponents to a .186 average since the All-Star Break. With Strasburg’s injury, Scherzer’s role as the ace becomes even more important.
Like Roark, Scherzer has been great against the Phillies in 2016 (3-0, 2.48 ERA). He is 6-0 against the Phillies since joining the Nats in 2015 (eight starts). While Ryan Howard is 2-for-21 against Scherzer with 13 strikeouts, he does have a home run and three RBI’s.
Prediction: Eickhoff has been putting up quality starts for the Phillies and this should be a close game as well. However, Scherzer being on a win streak and his strong record against the Phillies has me leaning towards the Nats to win game number three.
Next: Sunday's Matchup