Series #22 Preview: Nats at Rockies

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On the road again… Over the next nine days the Nationals have three road series against the Rockies, Indians and Phillies before coming back to DC on June 20th. The Rockies are 34-30 and are tied for second place in their division with San Francisco, two games behind Arizona. Cleveland is having an up and down year, but they are sitting in a similar situation as the Nats where they are not trying to lose any more ground to the division leading Tigers. The Phillies are old and decrepit, but they are hanging around in the NL East, so the Nationals need to put them down and hope the Braves lose a couple.

In the first series of the road trip the Nats take on the Rockies at Coors Field (or the launching pad as some refer to it as), where they have put up respectable numbers in the past. More importantly, almost every offense, no matter how bad they are, hits the ball well in Colorado due to the thinner air. So, hopefully the momentum from the double header victory on Sunday will carry over. Over the last 10 games, Colorado is 6-4 and over that same timeframe the Nationals are 4-6. 

Another good thing to look forward to is how well Ryan Zimmerman has done against the three pitchers he will be facing in this series. He has hit at least one home run against all of them and is sporting very high batting averages against them. He has not been hitting as well as he was in the month of May, but he came through several times on Sunday and with Werth back he has more protection in the lineup.

Lastly, Anthony Rendon is making sure he doesn't see Syracuse again. Personally, I have been a huge advocate for Lombardozzi starting at second base since before the season started and have been having trouble shaking my allegiance to him, but man, Rendon has been playing well. In 12 games in the big leagues this season he has a .293 BA (.773 OPS). A third of all his hits are doubles, which is ridiculous and he has shown some flashes at second, a position he has not consistently played since little league. Hopefully, he will be the spark that gets this offense going.

Game 63: Tuesday, June 11, Coors Field 8:40pm, Dan  Haren (4-7, 5.45 ERA) vs. Jhoulys  Chacin (3-3, 4.59 ERA)

What can be said about Dan Haren that has not already been said? He is just not pitching as consistently as the organization, fans and the baseball community expected him to. While his first three starts are certainly sandbagging his season numbers; in his last five starts Haren is 0-4 with a 5.83 ERA, although most of the ERA can be accounted for in the two poor starts at San Diego and against the Mets. It's easy to pick out the bad ones while failing to recount to the team losses against the Dodgers (L), Philly (ND) and Baltimore (L) during those stretches where Haren pitched very well. During that span Haren threw 26 strikeouts (7.98 K/9), which is a few ticks higher than his career average, but alas it did not helped the Nationals in the win column. In his last outing against the Mets he only lasted four innings, gave up five runs on four hits in a game that the Nats got trounced 10-1. All in all, his pitches were up in the zone and batters teed off. Dave wrote this morning about Dan Haren.

Haren has started 14 games against the Rockies where he has amassed a 7-5 record over the course of 90.2 innings. He faced Colorado once last season and came away with the win after pitching 5.1 innings and allowing four runs off of 10 hits. The Rockies current lineup has not fared well against Haren in the past. As a team they are batting .214 with a .245 OBP (.693 OPS), which is quite low. The only one holding the team batting average up above .200 is Carlos Gonzalez. As a team the Rockies might not be excited to see Haren come to the Mile High City, but Gonzalez is more than likely ecstatic. In 21 plate appearances he has a 1.476 OPS and three homers against Haren. He has also recorded two doubles and has been walked three times, while only striking out twice.

Current Rockies vs. Dan Haren:

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="PA" class="tooltip" tip="Plate Appearances
When available, we use actual plate appearances from play-by-play game accounts
Otherwise estimated using AB + BB + HBP + SF + SH,
which excludes catcher interferences.
When this color click for a summary of each PA." align="center">PA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="batting_avg" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Hits/At Bats
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played
Bold indicates highest BA using current stats
Gold means awarded title at end of year." align="center">BA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="(H + BB + HBP)/(At Bats + BB + HBP + SF)
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OBP

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="slugging_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Total Bases/At Bats or
(1B + 2*2B + 3*3B + 4*HR)/AB

For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">SLG

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_plus_slugging" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="On-Base + Slugging Percentages
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OPS

AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO
Troy Tulowitzki 34 34 9 1 0 3 5 0 13 .265 .265 .559 .824
Michael Cuddyer 31 30 4 0 0 1 2 1 10 .133 .161 .233 .395
Todd Helton 23 23 4 1 0 1 3 0 4 .174 .174 .348 .522
Yorvit Torrealba 23 21 3 2 0 0 1 0 5 .143 .182 .238 .420
Carlos Gonzalez 21 18 7 2 0 3 4 3 2 .389 .476 1.000 1.476
Dexter Fowler 6 5 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 .000 .167 .000 .167
Tyler Colvin 3 3 2 0 0 1 1 0 0 .667 .667 1.667 2.333
DJ LeMahieu 3 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .333 .333 .333 .667
Jordan Pacheco 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
Eric Young 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 1.000 1.000 2.000 3.000
Adam Ottavino 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
Manny Corpas 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
Total 153 145 31 7 0 9 16 5 42 .214 .245 .448 .693
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 6/11/2013.

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The Nationals might just score enough runs off of Jhoulys Chacin to get Dan Haren a win. I can say this because Chacin is winless in his last seven starts and his ERA has been climbing as the season has progressed. For April Chacin was rolling with a 1.46 ERA (3.03 FIP). Then came May where he posted a 5.87 ERA (2.87 FIP), but was not given much help by the guys behind him. Now, in two starts in June he has a 7.94 ERA (4.48 FIP) and more of the onus has been on him. Hitters are beating up on Chacin and they are doing it often. Even the Nats struggling offense should be able to have a respectable showing against him. In his last start against Padres he lasted only 5.1 innings and gave up five runs.

Due to issues with his command, Chacin does not throw a lot of strikes, especially first pitch strikes. He only throws first pitch strikes about 45 percent of the time. However, he has made adjustments over the years that have improved his ability to help his team come away with a win. Prior to the 2011 season, he use to induce a lot of fly balls, but because he has started to throw his slider and changeup more he has been getting more and more groundballs. He throws five pitches: Four-Seam Fastball (86-94 mph, 90 avg), Two-Seam Fastball (85-94 mph, 90 avg), Slider (80-84 mph, 81 avg), Curveball (74-80 mph, 79 avg) and Changeup (79-88 mph, 83 avg). His fastball is his worst pitch and his slider is his best pitch. He has thrown the changeup more over the past two years and his fastball less, which some analysts believe has been the reason for some of his successes.

Chacin has started three games against the Nationals throughout his career and has a 1-2 record that is accompanied with a 5.29 ERA. The entire Nationals lineup only has 45 plate appearances against Chacin over his career, so the sample size is relatively low when looking for trends, but Ryan Zimmerman has owned Chacin in the past. He has a blistering 2.095 OPS in nine plate appearances. In those appearances he has hit two homers and five RBIs.

Current Nationals vs. Jhoulys Chacin:

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="PA" class="tooltip" tip="Plate Appearances
When available, we use actual plate appearances from play-by-play game accounts
Otherwise estimated using AB + BB + HBP + SF + SH,
which excludes catcher interferences.
When this color click for a summary of each PA." align="center">PA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="batting_avg" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Hits/At Bats
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played
Bold indicates highest BA using current stats
Gold means awarded title at end of year." align="center">BA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="(H + BB + HBP)/(At Bats + BB + HBP + SF)
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OBP

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="slugging_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Total Bases/At Bats or
(1B + 2*2B + 3*3B + 4*HR)/AB

For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">SLG

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_plus_slugging" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="On-Base + Slugging Percentages
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OPS

AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO
Adam LaRoche 11 10 2 0 0 0 1 0 4 .200 .182 .200 .382
Ryan Zimmerman 9 7 4 0 0 2 5 2 1 .571 .667 1.429 2.095
Jayson Werth 9 8 3 1 0 0 0 1 0 .375 .444 .500 .944
Ian Desmond 6 6 2 1 0 0 0 0 1 .333 .333 .500 .833
Roger Bernadina 5 4 1 0 0 0 1 1 0 .250 .400 .250 .650
Denard Span 3 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 .333 .333 .333 .667
Total 45 39 13 2 0 2 7 4 7 .333 .386 .538 .925
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 6/11/2013.

Game 64: Wednesday, June 12, Coors Field 8:40pm, Ross  Ohlendorf (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. Jorge De La Rosa (7-3, 3.38 ERA)

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For the second game of the series it is a brain versus brawn matchup. With Strasburg out the Nats called up Ross Ohlendorf from AAA Syracuse to make the start against the Rockies. Ohlendorf is a smart guy to say the least and he will need every ounce of his brain power against Jorge De La Rosa, who is having a career year. Ohlendorf is a graduate of Princeton (yes, thee Princeton) and was voted the third smartest professional athlete by Sporting News back in 2010. He has played for the Yankee, Pirates and Padres and in his professional career he has a record of 18-32 with a 5.10 ERA (4.86 FIP). He was signed by the Nationals on January 10, 2013 as an insurance plan to bolster the rotation in case anyone in the rotation went down with an injury. Well, the Nats are two men down in the rotation, so they called on Ohlendorf to make a spot start.

Ohlendorf has come on as of late for the Syracuse Chiefs and has been baffling AAA batters. In his last start of Mat be struck out 11, which was a career record for him. He is currently tied for second in strikeouts in the International League and his slider has been very sharp according to Syracuse manager, Tony Beasley. He is a four pitch guy: Four-Seam Fastball (86-94 mph, 91 avg), Slider (76-85 mph, 81 avg), Changeup (78-86 mph, 83 avg) and Two-Seam Fastball (86-93 mph, 91 avg).  

Ohlendorf has started six games against the Rockies dating back to 2009 and has come away with a 1-1 record and a 5.00 ERA. He last appeared against Colorado in 2012, where he went 9.2 innings and gave up only two earned runs. Carlos Gonzalez, troy Tulowitzki and Todd Helton have been merciless when they have faced Ohlendorf in the past. They are all sporting an OPS over 1.170 and have batting averages north of .300.

Current Rockies vs. Ross Ohlendorf:

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="PA" class="tooltip" tip="Plate Appearances
When available, we use actual plate appearances from play-by-play game accounts
Otherwise estimated using AB + BB + HBP + SF + SH,
which excludes catcher interferences.
When this color click for a summary of each PA." align="center">PA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="batting_avg" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Hits/At Bats
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played
Bold indicates highest BA using current stats
Gold means awarded title at end of year." align="center">BA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="(H + BB + HBP)/(At Bats + BB + HBP + SF)
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OBP

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="slugging_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Total Bases/At Bats or
(1B + 2*2B + 3*3B + 4*HR)/AB

For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">SLG

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_plus_slugging" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="On-Base + Slugging Percentages
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OPS

AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO
Carlos Gonzalez 15 12 4 0 1 1 1 2 1 .333 .429 .750 1.179
Troy Tulowitzki 11 10 3 0 0 2 4 0 2 .300 .273 .900 1.173
Todd Helton 9 8 3 1 1 0 0 1 1 .375 .444 .750 1.194
Dexter Fowler 8 6 1 1 0 0 0 1 2 .167 .286 .333 .619
Tyler Colvin 8 7 0 0 0 0 0 1 4 .000 .125 .000 .125
Michael Cuddyer 4 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 .000 .000 .000 .000
DJ LeMahieu 3 3 2 1 0 0 1 0 0 .667 .667 1.000 1.667
Eric Young 3 3 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 .333 .333 1.000 1.333
Jonathan Herrera 3 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .333 .333 .333 .667
Jordan Pacheco 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 .000
Jorge De La Rosa 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 .000 .000 .000 .000
Adam Ottavino 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 71 62 15 3 3 3 6 5 17 .242 .294 .532 .826
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 6/11/2013.

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Jorge De La Rosa is definitely the brawn in this pitching battle. He's surprised many baseball analysts because until 2013 Jorge De La Rosa was a mediocre pitcher who had a career record of 54-51 and an ERA of 4.82. However, he had great start to the season and enters the series with a record of 7-3 and a 3.38 ERA (3.70 FIP). De La Rosa was working on a no hitter throughout the majority of the game on May 7 against the Cardinals, who are hitting every pitcher no matter how good they are. In his last outing he limited the Dodgers to two runs and six hits over 7 innings in a game where Colorado won handedly.

De La Rosa throws five pitches: Four-Seam Fastball (86-94 mph, 91 avg), Splitter/Changeup (80-89 mph, 83 avg), Two-Seam Fastball (86-93 mph, 91 avg), Slider (81-87 mph, 84 avg) and Curveball (70-80 mph, 73 avg). Both his slider and changeup are a force to reckon with. He likes to throw his slider with two strikes and his changeup has a nice fade to it. Most pitchers will shy away from throwing breaking balls when they get themselves into tough counts, but De La Rosa tends to do the opposite. So, when a pitcher gets up in the count and is expecting a fastball they are baffled to see either a slider or changeup.

He has started five games against the Nats and has come away with three victories and only one loss. De La Rosa may have a good win-loss record against the Nationals, but he has given up 16 home runs to them throughout his career. He has not faced the Nats since 2010 and the team only has 48 plate appearances against him, but the lineup is collectively batting .273 (.788 OPS). Jayson Werth has been back in the lineup for a week and that is a good thing because he has a 1.159 OPS against De La Rosa.

Current Nationals vs. Jorge De La Rosa:

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="PA" class="tooltip" tip="Plate Appearances
When available, we use actual plate appearances from play-by-play game accounts
Otherwise estimated using AB + BB + HBP + SF + SH,
which excludes catcher interferences.
When this color click for a summary of each PA." align="center">PA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="batting_avg" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Hits/At Bats
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played
Bold indicates highest BA using current stats
Gold means awarded title at end of year." align="center">BA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="(H + BB + HBP)/(At Bats + BB + HBP + SF)
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OBP

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="slugging_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Total Bases/At Bats or
(1B + 2*2B + 3*3B + 4*HR)/AB

For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">SLG

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_plus_slugging" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="On-Base + Slugging Percentages
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OPS

AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO
Adam LaRoche 13 13 3 1 0 0 0 0 7 .231 .231 .308 .538
Ryan Zimmerman 12 11 3 1 0 1 3 1 2 .273 .333 .636 .970
Jayson Werth 9 7 2 0 0 1 3 2 0 .286 .444 .714 1.159
Chad Tracy 6 6 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .167 .167 .167 .333
Ian Desmond 3 2 1 0 0 0 1 1 0 .500 .667 .500 1.167
Kurt Suzuki 3 3 1 0 0 0 2 0 0 .333 .333 .333 .667
Total 48 44 12 2 0 2 9 4 9 .273 .333 .455 .788
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 6/11/2013.

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Game 65: Thursday, June 13, Coors Field 3:10pm, Ross  Detwiler, LHP (2-4, 2.76 ERA) vs. Jeff  Francis, LHP (2-4, 6.30 ERA)

 

He’s Back! After nearly a month, Ross Detwiler will rejoin the rotation and start his first Major League game since May 15 when he suffered an oblique strain. Detwiler was scheduled to come off the DL and rejoin the team two weeks ago, but he suffered a setback in his rehabilitation. Now, he says that the pain and discomfort on his right side is completely gone. Detwiler, who I argue might be one of the best fifth (hell, probably fourth) starter in any rotation brings back his 2.76 ERA. He also brings with him a career low 0.6 HR/9 innings and a total of 14 earned runs on eight starts all season. What Nate Karns did coming up and battling in his three starts was appreciated, but Detwiler has been sorely missed. Karns could be back in the big leagues later this year, but the Nats need wins and they need them now. Detwiler can do that, especially if the offense shows some life.

Detwiler has only started against the Rockies twice in his career and has never won a game. He has a 6.55 ERA against Colorado, but that is due to a disastrous outing in 2009. He has not seen them since he started against them in 2011 and most people can agree Detwiler has improved as the years and experience has piled on. On a plus note, he has never given up a home run to Colorado, which is a pretty good accomplishment because almost everyone gets rocked when playing in the Mile High City. The Rockies only have 25 plate appearances against Detwiler. Todd Helton has faced him the most with seven appearances. He had a 1.405 OPS and a .571 OBP, but since it looks like he is held together by duct tape and super glue, Detwiler might bet the better of him this time around.

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Current Rockies vs. Ross Detwiler:

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="PA" class="tooltip" tip="Plate Appearances
When available, we use actual plate appearances from play-by-play game accounts
Otherwise estimated using AB + BB + HBP + SF + SH,
which excludes catcher interferences.
When this color click for a summary of each PA." align="center">PA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="batting_avg" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Hits/At Bats
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played
Bold indicates highest BA using current stats
Gold means awarded title at end of year." align="center">BA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="(H + BB + HBP)/(At Bats + BB + HBP + SF)
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OBP

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="slugging_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Total Bases/At Bats or
(1B + 2*2B + 3*3B + 4*HR)/AB

For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">SLG

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_plus_slugging" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="On-Base + Slugging Percentages
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OPS

AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO
Todd Helton 7 6 3 2 0 0 1 1 0 .500 .571 .833 1.405
Troy Tulowitzki 6 4 2 0 0 0 0 2 0 .500 .667 .500 1.167
Dexter Fowler 6 5 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 .200 .333 .400 .733
Carlos Gonzalez 2 2 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 1.000 1.000 1.500 2.500
Yorvit Torrealba 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 .000 .500 .000 .500
Jorge De La Rosa 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
Total 25 20 8 4 0 0 2 5 2 .400 .520 .600 1.120
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 6/13/2013.

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Jeff Francis has never impressed a lot of baseball pundits with his career statistics, but he has always found a way to put the Rockies in a position to win games. However, he has had problems doing that this season. Francis will make his second start, to close out the series, since coming off the disabled list with a strained groin. His first start since re-joining the rotation went poorly, where he only lasted four innings, giving up four runs and six hits against San Diego. Everything in his stat line is up this season. He is averaging 1.6 HR/9, up from 1.1 HR/9. He is walking more batters up to 3.8 BB/9, which is more than one more batter walked per game than he averaged over his career thus far (2.7 BB/9). Lastly, his WHIP is averaging 1.650, which is above his 1.442 career benchmark.

He throws four pitches: Sinker (79-90 mph, 85 avg) , Curveball (63-73 mph, 68 avg), Changeup (73-82 mph, 78 avg) and Four-Seam Fastball (82-87 mph, 84 avg). His changeup is his best pitch in his arsenal and he throws it to more righties than lefties. His curveball is not very good and he does not throw it when he is behind in the count because it rarely finds the strike zone.

Francis has started seven games against the Nats in his career and come away with a 1-2 record and a 4.81 ERA. In 39.1 IP he has given up 47 hits, 23 runs and five homers. In two games against the Nationals last season, he gave up five runs off of five hits over 10 IP. Zimmerman, Tracy, Werth and Desmond are all sporting an OPS over 1.200. Zimmerman has 20 plate appearances against Francis and has a .474 BA and 4 RBIs.

Current Nationals vs. Jeff Francis:

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="PA" class="tooltip" tip="Plate Appearances
When available, we use actual plate appearances from play-by-play game accounts
Otherwise estimated using AB + BB + HBP + SF + SH,
which excludes catcher interferences.
When this color click for a summary of each PA." align="center">PA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="batting_avg" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Hits/At Bats
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played
Bold indicates highest BA using current stats
Gold means awarded title at end of year." align="center">BA

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="(H + BB + HBP)/(At Bats + BB + HBP + SF)
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OBP

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="slugging_perc" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="Total Bases/At Bats or
(1B + 2*2B + 3*3B + 4*HR)/AB

For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">SLG

<th onclick="" onmouseout="" onmouseover="" style="background-color: #ddd; border: 1px solid #aaa; padding: 2px;" data-stat="onbase_plus_slugging" class="tooltip hide_non_quals" tip="On-Base + Slugging Percentages
For recent years, leaders need 3.1 PA
per team game played" align="center">OPS

AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO
Ryan Zimmerman 20 19 9 3 0 1 4 1 1 .474 .500 .789 1.289
Jayson Werth 17 15 7 4 0 1 3 2 2 .467 .529 .933 1.463
Chad Tracy 17 16 7 0 0 2 2 1 2 .438 .471 .813 1.283
Adam LaRoche 12 12 2 1 0 0 1 0 3 .167 .167 .250 .417
Ian Desmond 8 8 3 1 0 1 1 0 1 .375 .375 .875 1.250
Kurt Suzuki 5 3 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 .333 .600 .333 .933
Denard Span 4 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .250 .250 .250 .500
Gio Gonzalez 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
Total 87 80 30 9 0 5 11 5 10 .375 .419 .675 1.094
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 6/11/2013.

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