The Washington Nationals might be looking forward to getting out of the dismal D.C. weather. And who can blame them when the high temperature in L.A. is forecast to be 76 degrees?
While the temperature might be conducive for great hitting, it will be a brutal task for either side. The projected starters for the three games are as follows:
- Friday, April 20: Max Scherzer vs. Clayton Kershaw
- Saturday, April 21: Stephen Strasburg vs. Hyun-Jin Ryu
- Saturday, April 22: Jeremy Hellickson vs. Alex Wood
With both sides sending aces to the mound, each game will likely be low scoring and close.
The Dodgers have not flashed excellent form to start this season. They are in third place in the N.L. West with a 8-9 record. But it’s important to note this team is without arguably its most important position player, Justin Turner, who broke his wrist in Spring Training. This has led to extended playing time for Logan Forsythe, who has a negative WAR according to Fangraphs.
One key matchup to watch in this series is the two bullpens. For the Dodgers, two-time All Star Kenley Jansen has struggled mightily with an 8.10 ERA and two blown saves. Along with Wilmer Font (11.32 ERA) and Scott Alexander (6.48 ERA), the bullpen depth might be limited.
On the Nationals side, Brandon Kintzler and Sean Doolittle have yet to flash their 2017 form. And Ryan Madson got rocked in his last outing. In games that are expected to be close, whichever bullpen can find ways to pitch clean innings will have a massive advantage in this series.