Washington (Zimmermann) +105 at Chicago (Jackson) O/U 8
The Washington Nationals are still the hottest team in baseball, even without Jim Riggleman in the dugout. Despite Riggleman’s shocking resignation yesterday, the Nats are poised to win for the 12th time in 13 games as they travel to Chicago tonight. Outfielder Jason Werth, talking about Riggleman’s departure: “It’s not going to change anything in here. We’re the ones that have been winning the ballgames, so we’re going to keep going.”
The Nats have an excellent chance to continue their winning ways tonight with Jordan Zimmermann on the hill. Zimmermann is 3-0 with a 1.32 ERA in his last four starts. He’s thrown nine consecutive quality starts, showing that he’s fully recovered from the Tommy John surgery that threatened to derail his career two years ago. The Nationals are 6-3 in those last nine starts, and two of the losses came by identical 2-1 scores – no fault of Zimmermann or the surprisingly effective bullpen behind him.
Don’t expect Washington’s lineup to be held to a single run against the slumping Edwin Jackson tonight. Chicago is 0-4 in Jackson’s last four starts and 2-9 in his last 11. Jackson has been struggling with his command, leading to high pitch counts (111 + twice in his last three starts) and high pitch-per-inning counts (19+ three time in his last six trips to the hill). After taking two out of three in an intense in-city series against the Cubs earlier in the week, look for the ChiSox to fall under .500 at the Cell with a loss this evening.