The Nationals are back to mediocrity in the standings at a flat .500 and 3rd place in the NL East. On June 9th, the Nationals were in 1st place and cruising at 11-games over .500. That was their high point in the season as we look back. Trying to find the answers in a team sport when things go wrong are often complicated. In baseball, wins and losses are often judged in numbers and statistics. Manager Dave Martinez’s strength was supposed to be analytics and statistics.
The statistics tell us that the Nationals are not in balance between the offense, starting pitching and the bullpen. The August ERA for the bullpen is 5.45 and they are 0-4 this month. Balance is always needed, and that seems to be the issue with this team as it is with most.
Tonight is game 3 in this 4 game series with the Cardinals. The Nationals send Jeremy Hellickson to the mound, and the Cardinals have lefty Austin Gombers. The 24-year-old made his MLB debut in June for the Cardinals, and he went to college miles from the Nats Spring Training complex in West Palm Beach. Gombers has reverse splits. Righties hit him at .200 and lefties at .277 and for more power.
Washington Nationals vs. St. Louis Cardinals
Stadium: Busch Stadium, St. Louis, Missouri
1st Pitch: 8:15 pm EDT
TV: MASN2; MLB.TV app out-of-network
Nats Radio: 106.7 The Fan and via the MLB app
Line-ups subject to change without notice: