The question these days is which Gio Gonzalez will be pitching for the Washington Nationals today? Since June 10th when the Nationals season changed course from 1st place to where they are now, Gio Gonzalez as a starting pitcher has been in control of much of the Nationals spiral down. Since that point, the Nats have only won 2 of his 11 starts. If that record was reversed, it would be the Nationals who would be in 1st place. Why exactly is Gio Gonzalez in the starting rotation? Well, quite simply the Nationals failed to upgrade at the trade deadline. Are you telling us general manager Mike Rizzo couldn’t find a pitcher with an ERA under 6.12? That is what Gio’s ERA has been since those 4 consecutive games when he threw at least 110 pitches. He went from Cy Young to Cy Old as he ERA went from 2.10 to 4.12 on the season. It is the Jekyll and Hyde that Gio Gonzalez has been for most of his Nationals career.
Gonzalez usually dominates the Marlins so here is to hoping he can do that today. That is all you can hope for. Maybe Gio can exceed his average innings today of 4.97 since June 1st. For 2 ½ months, that is what manager Dave Martinez got from Gio meaning the bullpen has had to cover 4 innings on average. When Gio had a great start on August 9th, he followed it up with a 4.0 inning 5 run clunker against the Cardinals. You can tell from Gio’s first inning what you are going to get from him. He has become so predictable from his body language and facial contortions that we named him “The Anesthesiologist” as he will put you to sleep and his teammates too.
Gio’s demise is as much on Rizzo, Martinez, and pitching coach Derek Lilliquist because he never should have been pushed like he was in the month of May. Gio wants to think he’s a workhorse but he is really a “three trick pony” and when that curveball isn’t working — it’s going to be a long day. So let’s hope we get “good” Gio today.
For the Marlins, they are pitching Jose Urena. Yes, the bad boy who just plunked Ronald Acuna on the first pitch of the game this week is going to start this game for Miami. Ureña while appealing his 6-game suspension was announced yesterday as the Marlins starter in place of Pablo Lopez. Ureña has pitched well many times against the Nationals. Good hitters like Juan Soto, Daniel Murphy, Trea Turner and Ryan Zimmerman have never had a hit off of Ureña. Michael Taylor is a career 4-10 off of the Marlins righty with a home run. Unfortunately, Taylor with his sporadic at-bats has been in a slump like Matt Adams. The last time Matt Adams got a hit was over two weeks ago. Back in late July, Adams was the team’s most clutch hitter with a .392 RISP batting average.
Miami Marlins vs. Washington Nationals
Stadium: Nationals Park, Washington, D.C.
1st Pitch: 1:35 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: