Nats Game Day – NLDS Game 2 at Cardinals

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Beanballs,Sports,Brian McNally

Nationals at Cardinals

Game » NLDS Game 2

Series » 1-0 Washington

Starters » Jordan Zimmermann (12-8, 2.94 ERA) vs. Jaime Garcia (7-7, 3.92 ERA)

When » Monday, 4:37 p.m.

Where » Busch Stadium, St. Louis

TV » TBS

Radio » 106.7 the Fan, WFED 1500, WHFS 1580

Almost time for Game 2 between the Nationals and the Cardinals with Washington taking the opener 3-2 thanks in part to Tyler Moore’s critical eighth-inning pinch-hit single. There were plenty of heroes for the Nats on Sunday, but that game easily could have gone in the other direction.

We’ll see how starter Jordan Zimmermann fares. He gave up a career-high eight runs to St. Louis in a Sept. 1 outing a Nationals Park. He rebounded with 7 1/3 innings of three-run ball on Sept. 29 at Busch Stadium in an eventual 6-4 win. You wonder if the shadows will again wreak havoc with hitters on Monday with the late afternoon start time. Cardinals players are apparently still salty about playing so many afternoon games last season. This makes 2-for-2 in the 2012 postseason. Then again — they still won the World Series so how bad could it have been?

No question the starters will have an advantage early, however. Zimmermann pitched into the seventh inning in just 12 of his 32 starts so the bullpen will likely need to come through again after Sunday’s stellar efforts from Ryan Mattheus, Tyler Clippard and Drew Storen.

Jaime Garcia had a nice September (2.45 ERA in five starts) and pitched well in his last start Oct. 1 against Cincinnati (6 2/3 innings, two runs). That rebound dates to a rough game in Washington on Aug. 30 when he gave up six earned runs in 5 1/3 innings in an eventual 8-1 loss.

“I’ve said this before, that start in Washington, I actually felt pretty good,” Garcia told reporters in St. Louis on Sunday. “It’s one of those things where they had a really good lineup and a really good team, and made a couple mistakes and paid the consequences.  I can’t really tell you the reason why I pitched [bad] is because I was doing something wrong and then I found something. That’s not the case.  You have a good team.”

Here are today’s lineups, which are the same as Game 1:

Nats

RF – Jayson Werth

CF – Bryce Harper (L)

3B – Ryan Zimmerman

1B – Adam LaRoche (L)

LF – Michael Morse

SS – Ian Desmond

2B – Danny Espinosa (S)

C – Kurt Suzuki

RHP – Jordan Zimmermann

 

Cardinals

CF – Jon Jay (L)

RF – Carlos Beltran (S)

LF – Matt Holliday

1B – Allen Craig

C – Yadier Molina

3B – David Freese

2B – Daniel Descalso (L)

SS – Peter Kozma

LHP – Jamie Garcia

Follow me on Twitter @bmcnally14

 

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