National League Preview from The Sports Network|
Tuesday, May 22nd
(All times Eastern)
Washington Nationals (25-17) at Philadelphia Phillies (21-22), 7:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Washington - Jordan Zimmermann (2-4, 2.58)
Philadelphia - Roy Halladay????? (4-3, 3.22)
(Sports Network) - The Washington Nationals have enjoyed success over the
Philadelphia Phillies in recent years and look to keep the trend going tonight
in the middle test of a three-game road series at Citizens Bank Park.
The Nationals posted their 12th win in 15 tries against their National League
East foes with Monday's 2-1 victory in the series opener. Ian Desmond homered
and drove in both runs, while rookie Bryce Harper added two hits and a run
scored for Washington, which has won two in a row after a three-game slide.
Gio Gonzalez threw six scoreless innings and struck out nine batters for the
win and Sean Burnett got the last two outs in the ninth for his second save.
Burnett came on in relief of closer Henry Rodriguez, who allowed the Phillies
to make it interesting with a run in the bottom of the frame.
"With Henry, it's either lights out or sometimes it's exciting," Nats manager
Davey Johnson said. "Again, Burnett did a heck of a job bailing him out."
Washington kicked off a nine-game road trip on Monday in which they will also
visit Atlanta and Miami.
The Nationals will roll the dice with Jordan Zimmermann tonight and he is 1-3
with a 3.91 ERA in his last four starts. Zimmermann last toed the rubber in
Thursday's 5-3 loss versus Pittsburgh and suffered defeat after he permitted
four runs and seven hits in six innings.
Zimmermann, a right-hander, fell to 2-4 in eight starts to go along with a
2.58 ERA this season. He lost to the Phillies in a 9-3 setback on May 6 and
was hit for three runs in six innings of work. Zimmermann is 0-3 in four
career starts in this series. Washington has scored fewer than three runs in
seven of Zimmermann's past eight starts.
Philadelphia has dropped three straight since winning a season-high six games
in a row and hope to even this series tonight. Kyle Kendrick toed the rubber
last night and was saddled with the tough-luck loss, as he surrendered both
runs through seven innings.
Ty Wigginton's sacrifice fly in the bottom half of the ninth inning scored
John Mayberry Jr. for the Phillies' only run. With runners on first and second
and two outs, Phillies third baseman Placido Polanco lined out to end the
"When you relax, you play how you play," Polanco said. "When you have
pressure, you try too hard and it never happens."
The Phils are 1-3 on a six-game homestand and last in the NL East.
Phillies ace Roy Halladay was able to earn his first win in more than a month
his last time out and will get the nod again tonight. Halladay was 0-3 with a
4.59 earned run average in five starts before last Thursday's 8-7 win against
the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field, where he allowed three runs in eight
innings for his first win since April 16 at San Francisco.
Halladay is 4-3 with a 3.22 ERA in nine starts this season, but is just 1-2 in
four outings at home. The Phillies hope the right-hander can find some success
at Citizens Bank Park against a Washington ballclub he will face for the 17th
time in his career. Halladay is a dominant 11-1 with a 2.28 ERA in 16 games
(15 starts) against the Nationals.
Philadelphia lost two of three in D.C. from May 4-6 and is winless in eight of
the past nine matchups between the clubs.
05/22 10:55:10 ET