Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Preview: Game 114 - Mets at Nationals - Niese vs Fister


Preview: Game 114
NEW YORK METS (54-59) AT WASHINGTON NATIONALS (60-51)

PROBABLE PITCHERS:
Jon Niese (5-7, 3.24 ERA) vs Doug Fister (10-3, 2.68 ERA)
TV - SNY - Radio - WOR 710 AM - First Pitch : 7:10 PM


Preview:

The Washington Nationals' bullpen is among the best in baseball, but it hasn't resembled that lofty status lately.

Giving the ball to Doug Fister could limit its involvement.

Fister has gone seven innings in four of his last five starts, a trend he'll look to continue Wednesday night while trying to slow down Daniel Murphy and the visiting New York Mets.

Washington (60-51) has a three-game lead on Atlanta atop the NL East, and the relievers have been a big part of that success with a 2.95 ERA that ranks sixth in the majors.

The bullpen hasn't been nearly as effective as usual during a 3-6 stretch, compiling a 7.48 ERA while allowing opponents to hit .380. The relief corps has given up four runs and 12 hits with two hit batters in 5 2/3 innings while the Nationals have lost back-to-back games, including Tuesday's 6-1 defeat to New York (54-59).

Manager Matt Williams, though, wasn't assigning blame since Washington also had Asdrubal Cabrera get hit by a batted ball for an out in the second inning, while Jayson Werth was thrown out at the plate in the sixth as the potential tying run.

The Nationals have been outscored 28-9 in their last five defeats.

Another strong start from Fister (10-3, 2.68 ERA) could help.

The right-hander has completed at least seven innings in nine of his 15 starts, including four of his five since July while going 4-1 with a 2.41 ERA. Fister allowed two runs in seven innings of a 2-1 loss to Philadelphia on Friday.

He yielded one run in 6 1/3 innings of a 6-1 road win for Detroit in his only career meeting with the Mets on Aug. 23.

Fister held Daniel Murphy without a hit in three at-bats in that meeting, but the second baseman is hitting .439 with five doubles, two homers, eight RBIs and nine runs over the past 10 games. He had his seventh multihit game of that stretch Tuesday, collecting three hits with a triple while plating two runs on a single off reliever Drew Storen.

He has a .451 average with 12 RBIs in his past 12 games in the nation's capital.

The Mets are turning to Jon Niese (5-7, 3.24), who has a 4.74 ERA while losing three straight starts since returning from a stint on the disabled list for a strained shoulder.

The left-hander allowed five runs -- three earned -- with two hit batters while throwing just 87 pitches in eight innings of a 5-1 loss to San Francisco on Friday.

Niese has tossed more than 90 pitches once over the last three games, and that's a concern for manager Terry Collins.

Niese surrendered five runs in four innings of a 5-2 loss at Washington on May 16. He had been 2-0 with a 1.67 ERA in his previous five starts at Nationals Park.

Batters vs Pitchers:

WASHINGTON NATIONALS CAREER STATISTICS VS. JONATHON NIESE (3-1, 2.83 ERA)
BATTERABH2B3BHRRBIBBSOAVGOBPSLGOPS
Asdrubal Cabrera30000000.000.000.000.000
Ian Desmond183200015.167.211.278.488
Danny Espinosa125100003.417.417.500.917
Kevin Frandsen104100101.400.400.500.900
Scott Hairston104100211.400.455.500.955
Bryce Harper62000020.333.500.333.833
Adam LaRoche154102603.267.267.7331.000
Nate McLouth32100100.667.7501.0001.750
Tyler Moore114001401.364.364.6361.000
Wilson Ramos83000102.375.333.375.708
Anthony Rendon61000001.167.167.167.333
Denard Span51000011.200.333.200.533
Jayson Werth237100118.304.333.348.681
Ryan Zimmerman177100114.412.444.471.915
Totals1474790317730.320.353.442.795
NEW YORK METS CAREER STATISTICS VS. DOUG FISTER (1-0, 1.42 ERA)
BATTERABH2B3BHRRBIBBSOAVGOBPSLGOPS
Andrew Brown00000010.0001.000.0001.000
Travis d'Arnaud30000000.000.000.000.000
Wilmer Flores32000000.667.667.6671.333
Curtis Granderson61001104.167.167.667.833
Juan Lagares21000010.500.667.5001.167
Daniel Murphy30000000.000.000.000.000
Taylor Teagarden10000011.000.500.000.500
Eric Young Jr.32000000.667.667.6671.333
Totals216001135.286.375.429.804
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