The Nats came out of the All-Star break needing to win. Then the second half began with a loss on Friday, despite a quality Strasburg start. It continued with another loss Saturday, despite masterful stuff from Gio. The wheels fell off today as ZNN lasted two innings, and Jayson Werth was the only guy to get a hit. They’re lucky to be seven back of the Braves.
This is the pattern for the team so many picked to win the World Series: pitch at a truly elite level, and hit like ****. I’m not sure people realize how special that dichotomy is, though.
It’s hard to be where the Nats are now (48-50) when your pitching is as good as theirs is (fifth-best ERA in the league). Here’s the full list of MLB teams that finished top-five in ERA and below .500 in the past 10 years:
– 2011 San Diego Padres (third-best ERA, .438 win percentage)
That’s it, and they finished last, which is what happens when your HR leader hits 11 and only one player has more than 45 RBI (both Ryan Ludwick). I’d say the ‘...