Monday, August 27, 2007

Nationals to take on Dodgers!

Well, tonight the much awaited (OK, personally much awaited) series between the Washington Nationals and the Los Angeles Dodgers takes place beginning tonight at Dodger Stadium... While I won't be taking the 35 mile drive to and from Chavez Ravine tonight or tomorrow night, I will be making the journey for Wednesday's day game. Derek Lowe will face off against Mike Bacsik tonight. Chad Billingsley will take on Jason Bergmann (in his first start back from the DL) on Tuesday, while Brad Penny will face Shawn Hill in the series finale.

One thing you won't expect to see in the series is a lot of power. The Dodgers rank next to last in the league with just 95 round-trippers. Although Ryan Zimmerman has already established a new career high of 21 home runs, the Nationals rank last in the senior circuit with only 92 home runs. Don't expect them to remain there much longer though, as the recent addition of Wily Mo Pena has already paid some dividends. Wily Mo, very impressively, has slugged three homers in his first nine games as a Nat. Speaking of Zimmerman, he has been red-hot ever since I last saw the Nats play in person on July 8th (Miss DC Day at the Nationals), slugging 8 HR with 33 RBI's and a .318 batting average over the past 44 games. Similarly, Nook Logan (.320 BA, 10 steals), Dmitri Young (.320 BA, 4 HR, 26 RBI), and Austin Kearns (.297 BA, 6 HR, 24 RBI) also appear to have been inspired by the happenings at RFK Stadium that sunny day in July. :)

Conversely, the teams are much better on the pitching side of the ledger - the Dodgers are 2nd in the league with a 3.99 ERA, while the Nationals own a respectable 4.55 ERA - good for 9th in the league. Game one of the series starts tonight at 10:10 ET/7:10 PT. Those of you in the D.C. area can catch the game on MASN, while those of you in L.A. can watch on Prime Ticket (formerly Fox Sports West 2).


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