Series Preview: Washington Nationals (21-19) @ San Diego Padres (18-21)

Denis Poroy

Let's get some runs, right? After a tough series in Los Angeles, the Nationals get a break. On top of the big ballpark, and struggling offense, at least they won't face former Cy Young winners. Silver linings like that movie said, or something... It's a four game series against the San Diego Padres.

The Nationals get set to face the San Diego Padres for a four game series. They lost the last two games against the Dodgers scoring a grand total of one run. They look to get more runs as they get set to face the Padres.

Probable Pitchers
Thursday, 10:10 p.m.
WSH: Stephen Strasburg (1-5, 3.10 ERA)
SD: Edinson Volquez (3-3, 5.15 ERA)

Friday, 10:10 p.m.
WSH: Gio Gonzalez (3-2, 4.20 ERA)
SD: Burch Smith (0-0, 54.00 ERA)

Saturday, 8:40 p.m.
WSH: Jordan Zimmermann (7-1, 1.69 ERA)
SD: Eric Stults (3-3, 4.51 ERA)

Sunday, 4:10 p.m.
WSH: Dan Haren (4-4, 4.76 ERA)
SD: Andrew Cashner (2-2, 2.84 ERA)

Projected Padres Lineup (via MLB Depth Charts)
SS Everth Cabrera
CF Will Venable vs RHP
3B Chase Headley
LF Carlos Quentin
1B Yonder Alonso
2B Jedd Gyorko
RF Chris Denorfia
C Nick Hundley

BENCH
C John Baker
1B/OF Kyle Blanks CF vs LHP
1B/OF Mark Kotsay
IF/OF Alexi Amarista
IF/OF Jesus Guzman

BULLPEN
RHP Huston Street
RHP Luke Gregerson
RHP Dale Thayer
RHP Brad Brach
LHP Joe Thatcher
RHP Tyson Ross
RHP Anthony Bass



TEMPERATURE CHECK (Last 7 Days)

Who's Hot

The Padres can definitely relate to the Nationals offensive struggles. Only three hitters (Kotsay, Amarista, Denorfia) are over .300 in their last 7 days and none of them have over 13 at bats. To make matters worse, only two more hitters have an OPS over .800 which is Carlos Quentin and Will Venable.

For the Nationals, Ryan Zimmerman (11/26 .423/.483/.500, 2 2B, 5 RBI) and Ian Desmond (9/25, 2 HR, 6 RBI). Bryce Harper is only 1/8 but his four walks has his OBP to .417.

Who's Cold

Chase Headley is struggling for the Padres (2/16, .125/.333/.313). Yonder Alonso is 5/20 and Jedd Gyorko is 4/16.

Danny Espinosa sits in the opener and is 3/29 over the last seven days. He has one triple and 10 strikeouts. Tyler Moore is 1/14 with 6 K.

MATCHUPS TO WATCH

Late Starts vs Inept Offenses

What happens? A bunch of Nationals fans on the East Coast will probably fall asleep. And this time, they won't have the pipes of Vin Scully to ease their pain. For insomniacs, hopefully the teams can score some runs. At least Bryce Harper is back in the lineup to hit some dingers or run into walls trying.

Stephen Strasburg vs Worriers

Strasburg has more losses than Dan Haren. Let that sink in. He has not been mentally strong and aligned with a struggling offense, it leads to disaster. Strasburg has a good opportunity to get back on track tonight against a below average offense in a pitcher's park. Hopefully the defense can not put him in bad situations and he can be the shut down pitcher he was in the first half of last season.

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