After a few minutes of worrying following some tweets from New York beat writers who were informed that the Mets were told they would be facing Tanner Roark this afternoon instead of Washington's scheduled starter, Jordan Zimmermann, the Nationals announced that Zimmermann was scratched from today's game with flu-like symptoms:
Zimmermann, 27, is coming off a +3.6 fWAR 2013 campaign in which the '07 Nats' 2nd Round pick finished at (19-9) with a 3.25 ERA, 3.36 FIP, 40 walks (1.69 BB/9) and 161 Ks (6.79 K/9) in 32 starts and 213 1/3 IP.
Tanner Roark, also 27, was scheduled to start the home opener on Friday afternoon, but he'll move up to make this afternoon's start instead.
Roark made his MLB debut in 2013. In 14 games (five of them starts) with the Nationals, Roark was (7-1), posting a 1.51 ERA and a 2.41 FIP with one HR (0.17 HR/9) and 11 walks (1.84 BB/9) allowed and 40 Ks (6.71 K/9) collected in 53 2/3 IP. Roark faced the Mets twice last season, going (1-0) with a 2.89 ERA, four walks and eight Ks in 9 1/3 IP. In his one start in Citi Field, the right-hander gave up six hits and two earned runs in 6 IP.
Here's the Nationals' lineup that will take the field behind Roark this afternoon in the series finale with the Mets:
No word on which pitcher will now start the home opener tomorrow afternoon, but Nats' skipper Matt Williams has yet to speak to reporters in New York today. More info when it is available...