Series Preview: Nationals @ Dodgers

DC Sports Nexus ---- Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Pitching Matchups, Times, & TV Listings

Monday, May 13th, 10:10PM – Jordan Zimmermann v. Josh Beckett (MASN HD)
Tuesday, May 14th, 10:10PM – Dan Haren v. Clayton Kershaw (MASN2 HD)
Wednesday, May 15th, 10:10PM – Ross Detwiler v. TBA (MASN HD)

The Nationals concluded a disappointing series with the Cubs on Sunday, and will now head out to the west coast.  A ten game road trip is what the Nationals have in front of them as they will get a tour of California, while playing three of the NL West’s clubs. The Nats will hope to bounce back after dropping two in a row, looking for that form that led to a five game winning streak.

Series Preview

The Nationals were swept in Los Angeles last year, and they will hope to avoid a similar result.  Both of the clubs are in different positions this year than they were at this point last year.  The Dodgers are in last place with many injury problems, while the Nationals have yet to catch the flow of the season, as they are still chasing the Braves.

Jordan Zimmermann and Ross Detwiler have been the best arms in the rotation so far, and both of them will take the bump against the struggling Dodgers lineup.  The Dodgers have a wide array of starters, as they will throw Beckett and Kershaw, with the third starter remaining unknown.  Chris Capuano, or one of the rookie sensations, Matt Magill or Hyun-Jin Ryu, could get the start.

The offense continues to struggle as many key parts are either missing, or just simply haven’t found their stride yet.  Werth’s injury, Harper’s slump, Espinosa’s inability to adjust, and the bench not coming up clutch in the late innings have all led to low offensive production.  The lineup will look to take advantage of the weakened Dodger pitching staff.


·         With Werth going on the DL, Eury Perez is filling his roster spot.  Perez brings a lot of speed and a good glove to the team, as he could be used in late inning situations.

·         Perez’s teammate in Syracuse, Erik Davis, is posting good numbers in AAA.  He has 4 saves and an ERA below 2.  If the Nats decide to add some stability to the bullpen, he could be an option.

Song of the Series: Hotel California by Eagles

The Nationals will be staying in various hotels throughout California for the next week and a half.  The song states that “this could be Heaven or this could be Hell,” and it is scary how much that applies to this series.  It could be a repeat of what happened last year with the Nationals getting swept, or the Nats could find another run of good form and begin to rattle off another five game win streak.

Matchup of the Series: Good Josh Beckett v. Bad Josh Beckett

Which one will show up?  This is what Dodgers fans wonder before every Josh Beckett start.  He is currently 0-4 with a 5.13 ERA.  In his last 2 starts he’s pitched a combined total of 10 innings, and given up 14 hits, 5 walks, and 7 earned runs.  So if the same Josh Beckett appears on Monday night that has appeared his last two starts, then it’s advantage Nationals.  However, don’t be stunned if he can find some form from earlier in his career, and shuts down the Nationals.

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