March 20 2018

Nats pick Strasburg to pitch Game 1; Scherzer start unknown

March 20 2018, 11:39 | Ann Lamb

Chicago Cubs playoff schedule set, Washington Nationals the first opponent

What flaw will hold Cubs back in playoffs?

Give a large measure of credit to Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks.

The Chicago Cubs and the Washington Nationals will commence their National League Division Series with Game 1 on Friday night as four MLB Playoffs 2017 games take place today. It is important to understand that by pitching Game 2, the Nationals would have access to Scherzer in a potential win or go home Game 5 while they would not have him for that game if he were to pitch the third game of the series. Strasburg was great as expected, but Hendricks was just as good and even better to a point. "So it was a long time ago", Gonzalez said. "Things don't faze him". It was dumb little shit like this-highlighted with cathartic bitterness by the Washington Post's Thomas Boswell-that had me wanting to kick a hole in the wall by the time reliever Ryan Madson gave up a pair of eighth-inning doubles to plate Chicago's third run.

Carl Edwards Jr. threw a ideal inning and Wade Davis finished the two-hitter for a save.

Joe Maddon already announced his rotation for the NLDS on Wednesday, choosing Kyle Hendricks to start Game 1 with Jon Lester moving back to start Game 2. He threw five shutout innings with four hits allowed, seven strikeouts and no walks in a 9-0 home win against the Reds his last regular season start. Strasburg took a no-hitter into the sixth only to lose the bid - and the lead - when the Cubs rallied for two unearned runs. Bryant's line single to right not broke up the no-hit try but also broke up a scoreless game, and he came around to score on a Rizzo single after he moved into scoring position with some nifty baserunning on his RBI single.

With a heavy beard and a lot of sweat on a muggy, 77-degree night, Strasburg dialed up his fastball to 98 miles per hour and mixed in an unhittable changeup. Who, in defeat, would set a franchise record with 10 Ks over seven two-run innings. That's the confusing nature, like I said, of this injury. He is among the most anonymous players on the star-studded Chicago Cubs. Until the sixth inning, that is. That they look like the team they did in the first half of the season. Strasburg missed both the 2012 and 2016 playoffs due to various injuries and only started one game in 2014 which he lost. Bryant alertly took second on the throw.

Event parking is free on a first-come, first-served basis in the Toyota Camry Lot at 1126 W. Grace St. As a result of these improvements, this may be the most well-rounded Nationals club we've seen since the ascended to contender status five years ago. How far will Hendricks go? He walked three batters and struck out six. Zimmerman was called out for running out of the baseline trying to reach first after a ball in the dirt in the bottom of the ninth.

Their undoing in the past has often been poor hitting and bad relief pitching, and it was the former that was most glaring this time. There are other guys who will bunt but are not as proficient as Turner.

"He's one of those guys that you just have to really stay in your zone and hunt a pitch in your zone because if you don't, he does such a good job of throwing marginal balls and marginal strikes that look good, and if you swing at those, you're going to be out", Washington second baseman Daniel Murphy said.

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