5:08 pm - Nationals @ Houston (0-0)
|Trea Turner - SS||George Springer - CF|
|Adam Eaton - RF||Jose Altuve - 2B|
|Anthony Rendon - 3B||Michael Brantley - LF|
|Juan Soto - LF||Alex Bregman - 3B|
|Howie Kendrick - DH||Yuli Gurriel - 1B|
|Asdrubal Cabrera - 2B||Carlos Correa - SS|
|Ryan Zimmerman - 1B||Yordan Alvarez - DH|
|Kurt Suzuki - C||Martin Maldonado - C|
|Victor Robles - CF||Josh Reddick - RF|
Plus, of course, the starting pitchers being Max Scherzer and Gerrit Cole. Both of them have made three starts in the post-season, and have yet to taste defeat. Scherzer, however, had a shaky start in the wild-card game against Milwaukee, and had to be rescued by the Nats 8th-inning comeback. Since then though, he has been better each time out. First, he got a W with seven innings of one-run ball against the Dodgers in the NLDS, and then blanks the Cardinals over seven innings of one-HIT ball against the Cardinals.
All told, he’s 2-0 with a 1.89 ERA in the playoffs, and a 24:8 K:BB ratio over 19 innings. Against just about any opponent, it’d be advantage Washington. Key words: Just about any. For the Astros send up Gerrit Cole, who has been completely unstoppable since May. Including his three post-season outings, he is 19-0 over the last 25 outings. Cole has won eight in a row, allowing five earned runs over 58.2 innings - a 0.77 ERA - with 92 strikeouts. I am hard pushed to think of a more dominant spell of pitching, especially in the playoffs. It’s not going to be easy for Washington.
Vaguely floating the idea of getting together somewhere in central Phoenix to watch Sunday’s game - presuming the contest goes to a Game 5, of course. A certain quorum of parties would also be needed to make it worthwhile. The previous two years, we’ve done the George and Dragon, but we’re open to other suggestions. Let us know in the comments if you’re interested.