Monday, September 27, 2021

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Series Preview: Philadelphia Phillies vs. Washington Nationals (August 30, 2021 – September 1, 2021)

The Washington Nationals return home for more NL East divisional games, this time against the Philadelphia Phillies.

Let’s take a look at the projected pitching matchups for the series against the Philadelphia Phillies. 

Monday, August 30, RHP Josiah Gray (0-1, 3.75 ERA) vs. RHP Zack Wheeler (10-9, 2.90 ERA) | First Pitch: 7:05 pm

First up against Philadelphia will be the youngster Gray pitching once again. Gray has gone six innings in each of his last three starts, with his last one being another good start for him. Six innings pitched, two runs were given up and seven total strikeouts. What makes Monday so special is the fact that Gray will finally be joined by the other key piece in the Scherzer/ Turner trade, Keibert Ruiz. Ruiz will be making his Nationals debut with Gray which will hopefully be a great pair for years to come. 

Related Article: Perspectives: The Future Starts Monday Night when Keibert Ruiz & Josiah Gray will both Appear Together

Facing Gray will be Zack Wheeler who has had an absolutely outstanding season thus far with the Phillies. He has the ability to pitch deep into games as shown by his recent outings, Wheeler hasn’t pitched less than six innings since his July 7th start against the Cubs. But, in the month of August, Wheeler has shown some vulnerability in his starts with an ERA of 4.62 in that time frame. He does have five starts against Washington this season, with an ERA of 4.11. 

The game can be seen on MASN and heard on 106.7, the Fan.

Tuesday, August 31, LHP Patrick Corbin (7-13, 6.09 ERA) vs. LHP Matt Moore (2-4, ) 6.12 ERA | First Pitch: 7:05 pm 

Next for Washington is the struggling lefty Patrick Corbin. Corbin had seemed to figure something out of late but then had a blow-upstart against the last-place Marlins where he only managed three innings on 58 pitches while giving up six total runs. Corbin in his career has 14 starts against the Phillies where he is 6-4 with an ERA of 3.43. The Nationals desperately need Corbin to figure it out not only for this season but the future as well. 

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Moore starts Tuesday for Philadelphia and this will only be his 13th start of the season but his 21st overall appearance.  So far in August, Moore has made three starts with two bullpen appearances for his team for a total of 18.2 innings. Over his career, Moore has made six total appearances against the Nationals and has an ERA of 4.50 in those games. 

Related Article: Perspective: Call Me Crazy, but I’m excited about the Nats future

Wednesday, September 1, RHP Paolo Espino (4-4, 4.13 ERA) vs. RHP Aaron Nola (7-7, 4.30 ERA) | First Pitch: 7:05 pm 

The final game of this series will feature the ever-reliable Paolo Espino for Washington. Paolo once again had a fantastic outing last start and will look to repeat that performance. On only 68 pitches, Espino tossed five innings against the Mets while giving up only one run with a career-high seven strikeouts. Espino has five appearances against the Phillies where he has an ERA of 7.62 in his career.  

Pitching in the finale for Philly will be Aaron Nola who has had a down season in comparison to his career numbers. His ERA is 0.70 points higher in 2021 than his career. Just from looking at numbers, he has just had a consistency problem this year. His last outing against the Nationals was August 5th where he pitched five innings and gave up five runs. In 23 total starts against Washington, Nola has an ERA of 4.08. 

Series Notes: Philadelphia Phillies

  • At the writing of this, Philly is in second place at 65-64 and 4.5 games out of first place.
  • Prior to the finale against Arizona, they are only 7-11 in their last 18 games. 
  • Bryce Harper is leading them in average with .299 and Rhys Hoskins leads the team in home runs. Hoskins will miss the remainder of the season due to injury. 
  • The Phillies have an ERA of 4.39, led by starter Zack Wheeler and his 2.90 ERA.