The Washington Nationals are seven games into the 2013 season and so far thebullpen hasn't looked as dominant as advertised. They haven't made it a six or even seven inning game. Rafael Soriano has one blown save and gave up another two runs last night. The only two Nationals relievers with an ERA under 4.00 are Drew Storen and Ryan Mattheus, but at the same time no Nationals reliever has pitched more than four innings. This is a cripplingly small sample size and way too early to worry about anything. Tyler Clippard gave up all of his three earned runs last night on a walk, a weak single, and a Paul Konerko homerun.
All night Phil Cuzzi had a tight inconsistent strike zone and it shows in the fact that there were 15 runs scored and a total of six homeruns hit in the game. Pitchers were forced to pitch to the middle of the plate and when they didn't Cuzzi was not going to call a strike. Can't complain as he was at least consistently inconsistent and caused pitchers on both teams to pitch in the middle of the zone. Aside from the poor zone of Phil Cuzzi, Clippard's homerun was given up to Paul Konerko who is one of the most underrated players of all time. Konerko has 423 career homeruns and a career slash line of .282/.359/.498, and has never gotten the credit he deserves as one of the better players in baseball. There is no shame in giving up a homerun to Paul Konerko. The only bad part is that there happened to be two runners on base, but some of that was out of Clippards control as Cuzzi was only going to give the corners when he felt like it and that was not a half inning when he felt like it. Read More