Yesterday’s finale against the Dodgers showed that the Washington Nationals needed more than good starting pitching to win that game. Now it is up to Jon Lester to be the stopper, and you have to wonder when Nats fans can expect the version of “good” Jon Lester. In his last two starts, he has given up 12 earned runs in 7 1/3 innings. Is this a result of no “spider tack”? Who knows, but Lester has put his team in some tough spots, and he hasn’t lasted more than 6.0 innings in any starts this season.
The buildup regarding Lester’s signing in the offseason was that he was a workhorse who will take the ball every 5 days, but the Nats have not seen the workhorse version in terms of eating innings as he has only averaged 4.78 innings per start , and the last two starts have to show drastic improvement in run prevention.
The Padres are starting righty Joe Musgrove tonight, and the Nats have seen him a few times before. He is a former teammate of Josh Bell and Josh Harrison from their time together back in Pittsburgh.
Manager Dave Martinez has Trea Turner back in the lineup, and that has shifted Alcides Escobar to second base and Harrison to leftfield. It will be Escobar who will be the lead-off batter in this game. Both Gerardo Parra and Yadiel Hernandez will both start on the bench. Both struggled with 0-fers in the Dodgers series. Parra is batting .071 (1-14) since June 29, and has worked no walks while striking out at a 42.9% pace.
Washington Nationals vs. San Diego Padres
Stadium: Petco Park, San Diego, California
1st Pitch: 10:10 pm EDT
TV: MASN, Bally Sports San Diego, MLB.TV
Nats Radio: 106.7 FM The Fan; SiriusXM® ( Streaming Internet 869)
Line-ups subject to change without notice:
1. Alcides Escobar 2B
2. Trea Turner SS
3. Juan Soto RF
4. Josh Bell 1B
5. Starlin Castro 3B
6. Yan Gomes C
7. Josh Harrison LF
8. Victor Robles CF
9. Jon Lester LHP