The Washington Nationals begin a seven game homestand tonight against the Cincinnati Reds. Here are our five players to watch
The Washington Nationals (43-29) did not have a fun time in South Beach as they lost two out of three games against the Miami Marlins. When you look at this series, they should’ve probably pulled off the sweep.
On Monday, the Nats scored six runs in the first three innings. Then, on Wednesday, Max Scherzer took a no-hitter into the eighth inning. But, the team ended up losing both games in heartbreaking fashion. True, they have a large lead in the NL East, but they ended up finishing the seven game road trip 4-3.
Tonight, the Washington Nationals are back home to begin a six game homestand. Their first opponent on this stretch is the Cincinnati Reds (30-41). The Reds are on a rough patch lately as they have lost 11 of their last 12 games and are eight games behind the Brewers in the NL Central.
Even though the Reds are in last place, Bryan Price’s club does have a strong offense. Despite shortstop Zack Cozart being on the disabled list, they are fourth in the National League in home runs (102) and are tied for second in slugging percentage (.453).
While the Reds have had success at the plate, they have struggled on the mound. Their pitching has the highest ERA (5.08) and has given up the most home runs of any team in the NL (115). No starter has an ERA under three and the pitcher with the lowest ERA is Scott Feldman (4.20).
If you move over to the bullpen, closer Raisel Iglesias is 12-for-13 in save opportunities. Plus, there’s a familiar face in the Reds bullpen as Drew Storen returns to the nation’s capital for the first time since 2015.
Here are the pitching matchups for this series:
Tonight: Luis Castillo (MLB debut) vs. Stephen Strasburg (8-2, 3.28 ERA) – 7:05 p.m ET, broadcast on MASN
Sunday: Scott Feldman (5-5, 4.20) vs. Tanner Roark (6-4, 4.88) – 1:35 p.m, MASN2
Without further ado, here are the players to watch in this series, starting with a former MVP who is coming off having a career long hitting streak