Should the rain subside and the teams take the field tonight at Nats Park, the Nationals versus Tigers game should be one to watch if you love good pitching.
Tonight features two early Cy Young candidates in the Nationals Jordan Zimmermann and the Tigers Anibal Sanchez. Both have gotten off to great starts this season.
For Jordan Zimmermann, the comeback from Tommy Johns surgery is complete. The right-hander currently holds a 5-1 record and a 1.64 ERA. He’s pitched two complete games including a complete game shutout against the Reds. He’s struckout 27 batters while walking just seven and has given up just two home runs all season long.
Opposing batters have had a terrible time against Zimmermann. The Nationals not-so newest ace has held opposing hitters to a .167 batting average and a .75 walks/hits per innings pitched (WHIP).
On the other side of the diamond, Annibal Sanchez carries a just as impressive 1.82 ERA to the mound with a 3-2 record. Sanchez has struckout a staggering 50 batters this season and has walked 11. Opposing hitters are batting .214 against him with a WHIP of 1.06. Sanchez ranks 8th in the MLB in strikeouts.
While both pitchers have been stout, they have their work cut out for them this evening. Jordan Zimmermann will be going against a potent Tigers lineup and the Sanchez will be facing a Nationals lineup that can explode for a multi-hit inning at any time.
For Zimmermann, having a solid outing this evening, should the rain letup, will all but solidify him as a premere contender in the NL Cy Young award race. The Tigers ar tied for first in the MLB in batting average with .285. They lead the league in hits and are second in RBI which means they do a good job of stringing hits together and moving runners around the bases when they get on.
In order to secure the win tonight, however, the Nationals are going to have to string some runs together of their own and that is something that have struggled with this season. The team currently bats .231 collectively and that ranks them third-worst in the league. Their RBI count of 111 ranks them near the bottom at fifth-worst in the league.
Based on the numbers, it looks like Jordan Zimmermann will need a Cy Young caliber night if the Nationals want to win against the Tigers.
Like I said at the start, if you the rain holds off, which it looks like it won’t, tonights pitching matchup is a dandy. Both starting pitchers can pitch deep into ball games and both have a sub-2.00 ERA. This is certainly an early season Cy Young candidate watch game at Nats Park.
- AL & NL Cy Young Races: Darvish, Zimmerman Lead (sidelinemob.com)
- Detroit Tigers (19-11) at Washington Nationals (17-15), 7:05 p.m. (ET) (miamiherald.com)
- Zimmermann, not Strasburg, leading Nats’ rotation (mlb.mlb.com)