Taylor Jordan faces the Milwaukee Brewers for the second time in his first major league run. Last week in D.C., the 24-year-old right-hander faced the New York Mets, against whom he'd made his MLB debut back on June 29th in Citi Field in NY. In his first start with Washington, the Nationals' '09 9th Round pick gave up five hits and three runs, one earned in 4 1/3 IP of a 5-1 loss to New York. The second time around, Jordan held the Mets at bay, giving up just five hits and one earned run in six innings on the mound in which he struck out seven. Nats' skipper Davey Johnson talked afterwards about what seeing a team for the second time says about a pitcher's growth.
"It gives you a good read on how your stuff is," Johnson explained, "they know what you throw and still don't hit you." The Nationals manager didn't, however, think the right-hander had his best stuff last Sunday in D.C. "I don't think [Jordan] was as sharp as he was last time out," he said. "But he threw awful good and made pitches when he had to. And the slider keeps getting better."
After 90 1/3 IP in the minors on his way up through High-A Potomac and Double-A Harrisburg and now 35 1/3 IP in the majors for the Nationals, Jordan is quickly approaching the innings limit the Nats have set for him in his first year back from Tommy John surgery. D.C. GM Mike Rizzo declined to offer specifics on when exactly Jordan would be done when he was asked on this past week's edition of "The Mike Rizzo Show" on 106.7 the FAN in D.C.
"He'll be shut down at some time, when we feel it's prudent to shut him down via our protocol," Rizzo told the show's hosts. "We've got a pretty good idea of when it's going to be, we just don't want to make that public right now."
Though the Nationals won't offer specifics about when Jordan's first full-year back from surgery will end, he'll get at least one more start this afternoon in Milwaukee's Miller Park. In order to help the Nats take three from the Brewers, however, he'll have to outduel right-hander Kyle Lohse, who's on something of a hot streak. Lohse held the Nats' hitters to one run on four hits in eight innings of work in a 4-1 Milwaukee win earlier this season and he's given up just one earned run over his last three starts and 19 IP, posting a 0.47 ERA while holding opposing hitters to a .208/.240/.306 line.
Game Time: 2:10 pm EDT from Wisconsin...
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