Nationals sweep the Marlins
The Washington Nationals' first and second games were all about pitching, as Stephen Strasburg and Gio Gonzalez shut out their opponents, with a little help from their friends in the bullpen. On Wednesday night, Gio went six innings with barely a hitch, but his most memorable contribution to the 3-0 victory was the home run he hit in the fifth inning, only the second of his career. Ryan Zimmerman got his first hit of the year, a triple, but was unable to score. On Thursday afternoon, the Nationals' offense finally kicked into high gear, as they beat the Marlins 6-1 to complete the sweep. Justin Ruggiano hit a home run for the Marlins, who barely avoided being shut out in three consecutive games. [With much more run support than he was used to getting last year, Jordan Zimmermann earned his first win of 2013. Jayson Werth hit a three-run homer, and Ryan Zimmerman went three for three at the plate, with one walk.] Among the sluggers for the Nationals, only Adam LaRoche has yet to connect. See MLB.com.
On the west coast in Oakland, meanwhile, former National Michael "Beast" Morse (now with the Seattle Mariners) hit his fourth home run, but the Athletics still beat the Mariners. Morse now leads the majors in homers. (See MLB.com.) Maybe the Nats' front office should have kept him after all.
Tonight in Cincinnati, meanwhile, the Nationals are not faring quite as well -- to put it mildly! Well, at least for one day, the Nationals had the best record in the majors (3-0), just like they did throughout September last year.
Nationals' head-to-head matchups
Following up on my research from last month, I finished calculating the win-loss records against each team for the entire eight-year history of the Nationals, going back to 2005. The compiled records clearly show that the Nats have consistently been bested by their divisional rivals in Philadelphia and Miami, losing more than six out of ten games. They're fairly close to an even record with the Braves and Mets. Outside the NL East, what stands out relative to what might be expected is the Nats' poor record against the Colorado Rockies [33.9%] and San Diego Padres [35.4%].
|Opponent||Nationals' WINS, |
|Nationals' LOSSES, |
|Nationals' winning percentage, |
|Total number of games|
The above figures pertain to regular season games only. Just to be sure, I checked my figures against baseball-reference.com, and made a couple corrections. Including the 2012 postseason games, the Nationals' all-time record against the St. Louis Cardinals would be 25-32. Eight full 162-game seasons would equal 1,296 games, but two Nationals games were canceled because of rain -- one each in 2008 and 2011 -- which is why the total is only 1,294 games.
Tables of head-to-head matchups for each year from 2005 to 2012 will appear soon on the Washington Nationals page.