Washington Nationals: 5 to watch in 4-game visit to Citi Field

Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports /
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Washington Nationals
Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports /

Ryan Zimmerman

Zimmerman made his emphatic return to the lineup on Tuesday night against the Atlanta Braves with a pair of home runs against R.A. Dickey, one of which put the Nats back in front 6-5. Over the last month, his 16 RBI’s are tied with Anthony Rendon for the most on the team.

When you take a look at this series, the late innings will be something to watch. Normally, the Mets will go to Jerry Blevins against Bryce Harper and Daniel Murphy. But, since Zimmerman is in between them usually, Terry Collins has to stick with a left-hander against the right-handed Zimmerman.

Due to that fact, the Washington Nationals first baseman has made them pay this season. In the six games he’s played against the Mets, he is 11-for-21 (.524) with four home runs and 11 RBI’s. Three of those home runs have come against Mets relievers and two of them are against closer Addison Reed.

If Zimmerman can keep this pace up, it would be the third season in his career in which he had 20+ hits in a season against the Mets. According to Baseball Reference, he had 24 hits and four home runs against New York in 2012 and 22 hits with four home runs in 2013.

Right now, you could make a great case for Zimmerman to be the MVP of the National League because of how he impacts this lineup. It’s tough to pitch around the middle of the lineup, but you wonder if the Mets will decide to pitch around Zimmerman or Murphy this weekend. Even when he misses a couple days because of a back injury, he is still locked in and ready to go.