After taking three-of-four from the Giants out in San Francisco, the Washington Nationals now roll into St. Louis for a three-game set with the Cardinals. District Sports Page has you all set with this series preview.
Washington Nationals (35-30, 1st in NL East) vs St. Louis Cardinals (34-32, 2nd in NL Central)
Game 1: Friday, June 13 @ 8:15 PM EST
Game 2: Saturday, June 14 @ 7:15 PM EST on FOX
Game 3: Sunday, June 15 @ 2:15 PM EST
Probable Pitchers (Season Stats; Career vs Opponent)
Game 1: Jordan Zimmermann (5-2, 3.17; 0-4, 7.03) vs Lance Lynn (6-4, 3.49; 2-1, 6.23)
Game 2: Stephen Strasburg (6-4, 2.99; 0-1, 2.37) vs Shelby Miller (7-5, 3.59; 2-0, .50)
Game 3: Doug Fister (5-1, 2.68; N/A) vs Jaime Garcia (2-0, 4.26; 3-1, 3.29)
Players to Watch
- Adam LaRoche (1B): .310 BA, .420 OBP, 8 HR, 33 RBI, .928 OPS
- Ian Desmond (SS): 13 HR, 42 RBI, .748 OPS
- Jayson Werth (RF): 6 HR, 31 RBI, 12 doubles, .784 OPS
- Tyler Clippard (RHP): 1.23 ERA, 37 K, hasn’t allowed a run since April 15
- Matt Carpenter (3B): .294 BA, .385 OBP, 2 HR, 24 RBI, 16 doubles
- Jhonny Peralta (SS): 10 HR, 26 RBI, .735 OPS
- Allen Craig (RF): 6 HR, 33 RBI, .248 BA, 12 doubles
- Trevor Rosenthal (RHP): 3.82 ERA, 17 SV, 39 K
Notables on the Injury Report
For Washington, catcher Wilson Ramos is once again on the injury report with a hamstring injury that has landed him on the 15-day disabled list. Gio Gonzalez pitched a strong rehab outing and is expected to return for his scheduled start on June 18th. That, however, won’t impact this series.
For St. Louis, the only guy on the injury report that would impact this series is first baseman Matt Adams. Before a calf injury landed him on the DL, he was batting .325 with three homers and 17 RBI. However, MLB.com reports that he’ll be reactivated for Friday’s game. Adam Wainwright is listed as day-to-day, but his next scheduled start won’t be until after Washington leaves town.
Since 2005, the Cardinals have found a healthy amount of success against Washington. The Nationals 25-36 against St. Louis and 6-21 when on the road at Busch Stadium. The series is highlighted by an 0-6 record Washington posted against them in 2013. This year, the two teams split a four-game set, 2-2.
Should Matt Adams return for this series, his impact could be pretty significant. In 23 at-bats against Washington, he’s batting .391 with a .652 slugging percentage, one home run and four RBI. In 12 at-bats against the Nationals this year, he’s got four hits including two doubles and three RBI.
Tyler Clippard has got quite a streak going. To find the last base runner to score against him, you have to go all the way back to April 15th. In 12 career innings pitched against the Cardinals, he has 3.00 ERA and has given up two homers. St. Louis has proven to be a challenge for him; will he keep his streak alive?
Expect to see low scores in this series. Both the Nationals and Cardinals rank in the top 10 in MLB in ERA, quality starts, WHIP and batting average against. At the same rate, both are in the bottom-half of MLB in runs scored, batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. If you love pitchers duels, you’ll enjoy this matchup.
Brian Skinnell is a sports writer born and raised in the Washington, D.C.-metro area. He’s had work published on Yahoo Sports and Rant Sports, and has made several radio show appearances across the country to discuss his works. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+!