Friday, May 1, 2009, 7:05 PM EDT
Todd Wellemeyer vs Jordan Zimmermann
Mostly cloudy,rain. Game time temperature around 70.
?'s For The DC Faithful...
• Is there any chance you're missing a Zimmermann start? C'mon?
• Who do you turn to in the ninth inning tonight if the game's on the line?
• You're going to miss a Zimmermann start? Really?
• He's hit in 19 in a row? Can Ryan Zimmerman do it again? 20 Anyone?
HERE HE COMES TO SAVE THE DAY...
While the DC Faithful were thrilled with last Sunday's win over New York and the performance of the Nationals' 23-year-old right-handed pitching sensation, Jordan Zimmermann, in front of 40,000+ in Citi Field against the Hated Mets, Mr. Zimmermann was in the locker room afterwards telling reporters, as quoted by Washington Post writer Chico Harlan in a Nationals Journal post entitled, "'We Needed One Of Those'", that he wasn't happy with his own work, prompting Mr. Harlan to write:
"If you'd heard Jordan Zimmermann talking after his second big league win, you would have been certain he had just lost. A sampling of what he said: 'I didn't have the control.' ... My fastball was 'all over the place.'... 'It was a constant battle all day long.' ... 'I don't know what the problem was.'"
Keep in mind that Zimmermann had just pitched 5.1 innings in which he allowed 6 hits and 1 ER with 2 BB and 5 K's in an 8-1 Washington win over New York to record his second win, (2-0) in 2 starts. But Zimmermann was a little wild, and had some trouble throwing inside at times, ending the day having tossed a total of 103 pitches in the 5.1 IP, 62 of them for strikes.
MLB.com's Bill Ladson has an article today entitled, "Flores, Zimmermann building rapport", where the Nationals' clutchy catcher tells Mr. Ladson that he's as excited to be behind the plate tonight as the DC Faithful are that Zimmermann will be on the mound. As quoted by Mr. Ladson, Flores says:
"'...knowing that he is going to pitch and that he is one of the best pitchers that we have on the staff right now,' Flores said. 'I pump it up and I like to play hard and play to win.
"'He likes to pitch very quick and tries to get the hitters out in less than three pitches. ... I think he didn't shake me [off] more than three times. He believes in me.'"
Don't worry, I'm sure Flores "play(s) hard and play(s) to win" regardless of who is on the mound for the Nationals, I think he just means that he gets "extra" excited for Zimmermann's starts, (laughs)...and after the beating he took blocking balls in the dirt last night, you can bet Flores will be happy to be receiving pitches that end up where he expects them.
***The DC Starting Lineup...(courtesy of Washington Post writer Chico Harlan's Nationals Journal post entitled, "Friday Night's Lineup":
- The Guzzzzz - SS
- Nick "Two-Spot" Johnson - 1B
- THE KIDS CALL HIM ZIM!! - 3B
- Big Walky - LF
- Elijah "Super" Dukes - RF!!!
- WWJD? - C
- TAWH Willie "Frakin'" Harris - CF!!!! (LADSON!!!!)
- "Elvis" Hernandez - 2B
- The Kid They Call Zim(n)!! - On the Hill in DC...
The Other Zimmerman Is On A Streak, Ya Know...Do Ya Know What The Kids Call Him?
The Washington Nationals play the 22nd game of 2009 tonight. Ryan Zimmerman has a hit 20 of the first 21 and the last 19 straight since he last went hitless against the Florida Marlins on April 7th. Zimmerman's AVG peaked at .295 in the Nationals' 13-11 loss to the Phillies earlier this week, after he'd gone 2 for 4 with 2 HR's, and since then he's managed just one 1 hit in 4 at bats in each of the last three games, leaving the Nationals' 24-year-old Face of the Franchise© with a .289 AVG, 8 doubles, 5 HR's and 16 RBI's, 9 BB, 20 K's, a .354 OBP, .544 SLG, .898 OPS, 128 OPS+...
The Washington Nationals vs Todd Wellemeyer...
St. Louis' 30-year-old right-hander, Todd Wellemeyer, has just 8 appearances on the mound against the Washington Nationals in his 7-year major league career, and only one start, last season on June 5th, here in DC's Nationals Park in a game Wellemeyer won for the Cards with a 6.0 inning, 5-hit, shutout effort in a 4-1 Cardinals' win over the Nationals. Wellemeyers' given up 37 hits and 15 ER already this season in only 22.0 IP, though he's yet to allow a HR...Who'll be the first to take Wellemeyer deep?
Wellemeyer vs The Nationals...
Cristian Guzman - 1 for 4, .250 AVG.
Jesus Flores - 1 for 2, .500 AVG.
Adam Dunn - 2 for 11, .182 AVG, 1 HR, 3 RBI's, 6 BB, 6 K's.
Willie Harris - 0 for 4.
Austin Kearns - 0 for 6.
Josh Willingham - 1 for 3, .333 AVG, 1 HR, 1 RBI.
Ryan Zimmerman - 1 for 2, .500 AVG.
For A Look Inside The Mind Of A Cardinals' Fan...Check out the SBN's Cardinals blog:
Check the NatCast if you're heading to Nationals Park...
Who's Watching Zimmermann? Who's Watching The Nationals?