In baseball, pretty much anything can happen on any given day, but the Dodgers facing the Nationals is a colossal mismatch no matter how you slice it.
The Dodgers have the best record in baseball (64-30, at .681 just ahead of the 66-31, .680 Yankees, who have played three more games), and the Nationals are the worst, at 32-65.
The Dodgers have twice as many wins as the Nationals.
In July, the Dodgers haven’t lost a series and have won 19 of their last 21 games. Washington has lost 17 out of 20, and hasn’t won a series this month.
Dodgers vs. Nationals
The Nationals have surrendered the most runs in the majors (5.49 per game), while the Dodgers have allowed the fewest (3.26). Los Angeles is second in MLB in scoring (5.18 per game) while Washington is 26th (3.82).
Unsurprisingly, given those numbers, the Nationals have the worst run differential in the majors (-162), while the Dodgers are second-best (+181).
Oh, and maybe you’ve heard the Nationals are looking to trade their best player, 23-year-old hitting savant Juan Soto.
It seems like Patrick Corbin hasn’t been mentioned recently except when referring to “Patrick Corbin’s contract,” which has a little over $9 million remaining this year plus two more years and $59 million guaranteed through 2024, as a possible attachment to a potential Soto trade. Corbin, who pitches Wednesday afternoon for Washington, has answered the bell every time, but has gotten his head kicked in.
Corbin has the worst ERA (6.02) and worst xERA (5.62) among qualified pitchers in the majors, and he leads MLB in losses (13), hits (142), and earned runs (70) allowed.
The only Nationals starting pitcher to earn a win in July is old friend Josiah Gray, who is holding his own in Washington’s rotation, with a 4.40 ERA and 4.33 xERA, though he’s allowed 21 home runs, second-most in the majors. Gray pitches Tuesday, in what will be 371 days after his major league debut for the Dodgers, at Dodger Stadium, in a colorful pitching matchup against Mitch White
Gray allowed seven runs, including three home runs, in three innings to the Dodgers on May 24 in Washington D.C.
Tony Gonsolin innings pitched
Tony Gonsolin starts for the Dodgers in Monday’s series opener, given a respite as his inning total mounts. Gonsolin last pitched for the Dodgers on July 13, allowing five runs in five innings in his only truly bad start all season. In between, he logged an inning in the All-Star Game, where he took the loss by allowing two mammoth home runs.
Gonsolin is up to 93⅔ innings this season, already his second-most in any season, counting the majors, minors, and playoffs. He pitched 139⅔ innings in 2018 for Class-A Rancho Cucamonga and Double-A Tulsa.
The Dodgers are also expected to slot Andrew Heaney back into the fold on Wednesday, after two minor league rehab starts, which for this time through will mean a six-man rotation. What that means for Tuesday starter Mitch White going forward remains to be seen.
The Dodgers took two of three games against the Nationals in May, with Los Angeles winning two blowouts before dropping a 1-0 affair on getaway day.