The Washington Nationals were on a roll and hit one of those bumps in the road yesterday. The great teams bounce right back, and the Nats will have a chance to do that in this afternoon’s contest with the Marlins.
There was some good news yesterday after the game that Josh Bell‘s MRI came back clean, and he was cleared to play. He has been the primary first baseman against right-handed pitchers. He has also been on a hot streak of his own the past two weeks. If not for Kyle Schwarber‘s historic home run streak, we would be talking a lot more about Bell, and Trea Turner who are both contributing to the team.
You can make many observations on that chart and see Jordy Mercer (small sample size) and Starlin Castro trending up. But this has also but another stretch that Juan Soto is lagging behind the pack. He has no home runs in this stretch — but even worse is that he only has 4 RBIs with Turner on-base 24 times while he was batting. The unthinkable would be seriously discussing moving Bell up to third and pushing Soto back to fourth. Yes, it is unthinkable at the moment, and that is why they have to fix whatever is wrong with Soto.
The Nats have Patrick Corbin on the mound for this game, and the team will face the 27 year old righty Zach Thompson who the Nats did face in Spring Training. He has had three starts for the Marlins and the key is to get him out of the game early. Lefties hit him at .316, but the righties are a combined .083 against him.
Is it time to bat the pitcher 8th to try to get men on-base for Schwarber who is the hottest hitter on the planet?
Washington Nationals vs. Miami Marlins
Stadium: Loan Depot Park, Miami, Florida
1st Pitch: 4:10 pm EDT
TV: MASN2, Bally Sports Florida, MLB.TV
Nats Radio: 106.7 FM The Fan; SiriusXM® ( Streaming Internet 869)
Line-ups subject to change without notice:
1. Kyle Schwarber LF
2. Trea Turner SS
3. Juan Soto RF
4. Josh Bell 1B
5. Yan Gomes C
6. Starlin Castro 3B
7. Gerardo Parra CF
8. Josh Harrison 2B
9. Patrick Corbin LHP