Notch another one up for Bryce Harper’s former team, as the Washington Nationals recorded another win over the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday night. It was the Nationals’ fourth win in a row over the Nationals and seventh in their last nine meetings. It hasn’t been an easy season for Bryce Harper and last night added to his frustrations. A week break didn’t seem to change much on Friday.
However, it’s only one game and the Phillies have plenty of room to make a run. By August, though, they better be focused and ready to roll for a strong push in the final two months of the season. We haven’t seen any indications of the team being focused up to this point. Harper was on fire down the stretch a season ago, but the Nationals did themselves enough slack. We could be talking about something similar this year.
With the victory last night, the Nationals have won ten of their last twelve games. They have their eyes on going to the postseason despite not garnering much attention. Anthony Rendon’s wallet is going to be getting a lot of attention soon, though. A healthy Stephen Strasburg pitching well completely changes the dynamic of the Nationals.
That means that they have three potent weapons in their rotation to throw at opposing teams. Max Scherzer, Strasburg, and Pat Corbin are all more than capable. Anibal Sanchez has been a tremendous No. 4 option as well. In other words, it wouldn’t be wise to sleep on this team.
They look hungry to show that they can be better without Bryce Harper on the roster. If they want to retain Rendon, they’re going to have to win an expensive bidding war, though. They made a smart decision with the Corbin acquisition, as he’s lived up to expectations and then some. Aaron Nola, who has been pitching extremely well too, will counter for the Phillies. Head below for our free Nationals vs. Phillies pick.
Washington Nationals vs. Philadelphia Phillies Pick:
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Patrick Corbin and Aaron Nola are both meeting at a time when their arms are on fire. The Nationals and Phillies have had no complaints with the production they’ve been getting out of Corbin and Nola recently. The Nationals spent $140-million on Corbin to come to Washington. Here’s a guy that hasn’t exactly had the cleanest bill of health throughout his career, so there were some skeptics about the deal. Thus far, though, Corbin has been worth the money. He holds an ERA of 3.34 and 1.11 WHIP on the season and has been at his best of late.
Corbin has been on fire with a 0.86 ERA and 0.71 WHIP in his previous three outings. The only thing that has been nagging his numbers has been his performances on the road. He is in elite category if he could get better as a visiting hurler. Corbin has posted an ERA of 5.26 and 1.43 WHIP on the road in 49.2 innings.
Compare that to his work at home, where he’s been lights out with a 1.84 ERA and 0.86 WHIP. There isn’t much more that Corbin could do to be better than that. However, he clearly needs to get better on the road to give the Nats a huge boost to their postseason chase. The Phillies have a .327 OBP in 140 at-bats against Corbin.
You aren’t going to find too many pitchers hotter than Corbin right now. But the Phillies have one of them in their stable. Corbin and his 0.86 ERA is bested by an ERA of 0.42. Nola has posted an ERA of 0.42 and 0.69 in his last 21.2 innings on the bump. He’s surrendered only 2 runs in his last four starts, which includes 29.2 innings of play. And at home, Nola has been hot with a 2.85 ERA on the season. The Phillies have been searching for answers, and I don’t think today answers all of them, but Nola likely gets them back in the win column Saturday.