Washington Nationals: 5 to watch in second half start against Reds

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
2 of 6
Washington Nationals
(Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) /

Zack Cozart

Out of all the good shortstops in the National League, the one that was given the All-Star nod was Cozart. While he missed the last series against the Washington Nationals due to being on the disabled list, Cozart should play a factor in these next four games.

Right now, Cozart is sixth in the National League in batting average (.316) and has five hits in 14 at-bats over his last seven games. He’s not going to hit for much power (nine home runs), but he puts the ball in play. His 78 hits in 66 games are the fifth most on the Reds roster.

While the Reds are in rebuilding mode, Cozart has the chance to be one of their franchise players. The question for their front office is whether or not they will be able to sign him to a long-term extension. He will be a free agent at the end of the year.

In 28 games against the Nats in his career, Cozart is a .255 hitter with three home runs and 14 RBI’s. He has never faced Max Scherzer and his numbers against the other three starters he will face in this series aren’t good either (3-for-39 against Gonzalez, Roark, and Strasburg).

The 1-2 combination of Billy Hamilton and Cozart is something to keep an eye on in this series. Now, let’s take a look at one of the players in this series that had a compelling case to make the All-Star team, but was snubbed.