The last time the two faced off was a wild showdown featuring three shutouts and a Nationals late-inning comeback, courtesy of a Dodgers bullpen blowup. The series was split (2-2), so the season series will be decided with the upcoming 3-game series.
The Dodgers are 27-23 on the road, and though this is still a winning record, is a significant difference compared to their 40-14 home record. The Nationals are glad to be home, since they boast a winning home record (29-20).
Game one: Hyun-Jin Ryu (11-2, 1.76 ERA) vs. Aníbal Sánchez (6-6, 3.80 ERA)
Friday, July 26 - 4:05 p.m. PDT // TV: SportsNet LA
Hyun-Jin Ryu still leads the MLB with his impressive 1.76 ERA. He didn’t have his best stuff in his last outing, but it was still effective against the Marlins. He went seven innings and only allowed one run on four hits. He matched a season-high of three walks but ultimately he earned his 11th win of the year. Friday will mark his 10th away start of the season on six days of rest. The lefty is less dominant on the road with a 2.92 ERA compared to a 0.89 ERA in 10 starts at home in 2019.
The Korean Monster has only faced the Nationals four times in his career, and one of those starts was earlier this season. It was one of his best outings of the year, as he went eight shutout innings, allowing only one hit to former NL West foe, Gerardo Parra.
Aníbal Sánchez will pitch the series opener for the Nationals on Friday. Sánchez had a rather rough outing against the Dodgers in May. He allowed went 4 1⁄3 innings and allowed three earned runs, including two home runs, in the loss. Joc Pederson will likely be happy to see him again, as he hit the two home runs against Sánchez.
Sánchez has pitched at least five innings in each of his last nine outings, boasting a 6-0 record and 2.75 ERA in the same time span.
Game two: Clayton Kershaw (8-2, 2.84 ERA) vs. TBD
Saturday, July 27 - 1:05 p.m. PDT // TV: SportsNet LA
Clayton Kershaw is Mr. Reliable, pitching at least six innings in each of his 17 starts this season. He went six shutout innings in his most recent start against the Marlins, allowing just two hits. He didn’t earn a win for his great outing, since the bullpen had other ideas. Run support has always been a point of concern for the lefty, so that is something that may come up on Saturday.
Kershaw is 11-3 in his career versus the Nationals and has a 2.18 ERA. Currently, Gerardo Parra and Anthony Rendon are players who have a good history against Kershaw, with each batting over .300 in 23 and 14 plate appearances, respectively.
The Nationals at this point have not announced who will start in game two. Their rotation is a bit out of sorts as well, so predicting who will pitch is a tough task.
Game three: Walker Buehler (9-1, 3.23 ERA) vs. Stephen Strasburg (13-4, 3.37 ERA)
Sunday, July 28 - 10:35 a.m. PDT // TV: SportsNet LA, TBS (out-of-market)
Finishing off the series will be Walker Buehler, who is easily one of the most dominant pitchers in the rotation and in the league. The 24-year-old suffered his last and only loss over two months ago — on May 18 against the Cincinnati Reds. Of course a win-loss record is not the perfect indication of a pitcher’s worth, but it is an impressive stat.
He has five scoreless outings under his belt this season. One of these came in his most recent outing against the Marlins where he went seven shutout innings, allowing five hits and dealing 11 strikeouts. Another one of his scoreless outings was against the Washington Nationals on May 11. He also went seven innings and allowed four hits and struck out seven.
Up against Buehler will be Stephen Strasburg, who is recently on a winning streak. He has earned a win in all of his last six starts, boasting a 2.39 ERA in that span. In his start against the Dodgers earlier this year, he pitched six innings. He allowed two earned runs, four hits and two walks in the loss. In his career against the Dodgers, he is 2-5 with a 2.67 ERA.
How many games will the Dodgers win against the Nationals?
This poll is closed
Correction: A previous version of this article stated the first game was at 1:05 p.m. PDT, but the game is in fact at 4:05 p.m. PDT.