Atlanta Braves Vs. Washington Nationals: Lineups, preview, prediction & channel info (April 9, 2018)
The Braves head up the coast to the nation’s capital as Washington look to get to .500
The Nationals haven’t had the best start to the year. After winning their first four games they have lost five straight, including being swept at home by the NL East-leading Mets.
They have their star on the mound today though, as Max Scherzer takes the ball against the Braves. Atlanta have been hitting well to start the season and will look to take advantage of a rocky Nationals side. Can they pile on the misery or will the Nationals snap the streak?
Julio Teheran (RHP) Vs. Max Scherzer (RHP)
Teheran has had a tough start to the season, going just eight innings across his two starts, allowing nine earned runs, four homers, and giving up more walks (6) than he has strikeouts (5).
The Braves have started the season well at the plate, but they need their nominal ace to lead their rotation, and so far Teheran has done anything but.
Scherzer has won the last two NL Cy Youngs, and for good reason. He is a dominant strikeout artist. He is posting a wild 13.9 K/9 through his first two starts, and while that will come down some as the season progresses, it is a good sign that he is finding success already. He’s given up more contact that usual, but again that should stabilize.
He took the loss last time out against these Braves after three unearned runs ballooned the scoreboard. He is one of the most balanced pitchers in the league, with almost a perfect 50-50 split between his fastball and breaking stuff.
|Braves Lineup||Home Runs||Batting Average||On-Base Percentage|
|Nationals Lineup||Home Runs||Batting Average||On-Base Percentage|
Who’s hot, and who’s not
Both these lineups are seeing the ball well and their superstars are firing. Freddie Freeman has been excellent so far, and against any other team would be the in-form hitter. Bryce Harper is in a monstrous vein of form though, smashing the ball all over the park and powering a Nationals lineup that is #4 in OBP.
The Braves have the advantage at the plate right now though. As a team they lead the Majors in runs, average, OBP, and slugging. The hot bats of Dansby Swanson and Preston Tucker won’t last forever, but right now they are making Atlanta one of the toughest lineups to get through in the Majors.
Prediction: Nationals 6 – 3 Braves
Both lineups are good right now, but only one starter is performing. The gap between Scherzer and Teheran is huge, even if Teheran were to return to form tonight. He has wavered back and forth between good seasons and average ones, and right now Teheran cannot be trusted to provide any kind of consistency.
The game will be broadcast live on FSSO and MASN, as well as streamed live on MLB.tv for out of market subscribers. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05pm ET.