CY TIMES THREE
It helps when the Nats can toss three Cy Young candidates out over the first three games.
Whether Max Scherzer or Stephen Strasburg starts Game 1, the other will go Saturday in Game 2 and Gio Gonzalez should get the call for Game 3 in Chicago. All three won 15 games with an ERA under 3.00.
Yes, the Cubs have Kyle Hendricks and Jon Lester. Remember, the Cubs have plenty of miles on those arms from the last long two seasons. Jose Quintana will help, but Jake Arrieta’s legs are in question. As good as Chicago’s starters are, the Nats are better.
If he pitches Game 4, Tanner Roark has layoff experience and will not be as nervous. Plus, he is from the Chicagoland area. He will be ready.
Although every playoff game turns into a bullpen affair, the Nats have four starters capable of keeping Washington in a game for six innings. Because the front three are strong, they can hold the door shut on the Cubs offense.
The front four went 59-30 in 121 starts. Considering all the injuries, combined they missed 11 possible starts. Reliable and fantastic.
Pitching wins championships is not a cliché. Washington has four guys who can control a start and frustrate the other team. It matters.