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Washington Nationals Visit Houston Astros: Series Preview

Houston will try to shake their latest rough patch with a three-game set against the visiting Washington Nationals.

MLB: Spring Training-Washington Nationals at Houston Astros Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Astros will host the Washington Nationals for three games starting Tuesday night.

Houston just finished up a seven-game road trip with a disappointing total of two wins, and have lost six-of-eight overall after winning 18-of-23. They won only the middle matchup against their most recent opponent, a 6-4 win against the Cleveland Guardians. In their last game, on Sunday, they dropped a 5-0 decision to Shane Bieber, who struck out nine over seven shutout three-hit innings. Houston only managed a total of four hits in the game, and only Yainer Diaz had as much as an extra-base hit, with a double.

Instead of dropping the series finale highlight reel, I included Houston’s most recent victory, their 6-4 win over the Guard on Saturday. I may be a glutton for punishment, but I’m not a masochist.

Most recently, the Nationals closed their three-game set against the Atlanta Braves with a 6-2 win on Sunday. The win came on the heels of a six-game losing streak. In the win, Jeimer Candelario (8) and Dominic Smith (2) went deep, and Trevor Williams (3-4, 4.11) earned the win with five innings of two-run ball, with six strikeouts.

The last time Houston played Washington was in our Nation’s Capital from May 13 through 15 last season. Houston won two-of-three, including the finale, 8-0. Martín Maldonado (3), Yuli Gurriel (2), Chas McCormick (3), and Jose Altuve (7) all went deep. Justin Verlander (5-1, 1.38) earned the victory.

All-Time Head-to-Head

Houston is 246-208 all-time against the Nationals/Montreal Expos, their .542 winning percentage, their second-best mark against any National League opponent. They also have a 3-4 record in postseason play against the Nats, but the less said about that the better.

Houston Astros: 37-29, .561, second in AL West, five games behind the first-place Texas Rangers. Fifth in the AL, currently in possession of the final wildcard spot a half-game ahead of the Toronto Blue Jays. Tied for seventh in MLB, last 10: WWLWLLLLWL, playoff odds: 88.4 percent according to B/R.

Washington Nationals: 26-38, .406, fifth in the NL East, 13.5 GB, 14th in the NL, seven games behind the final wildcard spot. 27th in MLB. last 10: LWWLLLLLLW, playoff odds: 0.6 percent according to B/R.

Team Leaders

AVG: Joey Meneses .307, Mauricio Dubón .300, Lane Thomas .279, Yordan Alvarez .277, Luis Garcia .276
OBP: Yordan Alvarez .388, Joey Meneses .351, Kyle Tucker .345, Dominic Smith .343, Alex Bregman .339
SLG: Yordan Alvarez .589, Lane Thomas .457, Jeimer Candelario .446, Kyle Tucker .429, Jeremy Pena .423
OPS: Yordan Alvarez .977, Lane Thomas .789, Jeimer Candelario .776, Kyle Tucker .774, Joey Meneses .749
HR: Yordan Alvarez 17, Alex Bregman & Lane Thomas 9, Jeremy Pena, Kyle Tucker & Jeimer Candelario 8
RBI: Yordan Alvarez 55, Alex Bregman 39, Kyle Tucker 38, Joey Meneses 32, Jeimer Candelario & Lane Thomas 30
BB: Alex Bregman 35, Yordan Alvarez 32, Kyle Tucker 29, Alex Call 26, Dominic Smith 24
SB: Corey Julks & Kyle Tucker 10, Victor Robles 8, CJ Abrams, Alex Call, Lane Thomas & Jeremy Pena 6
ERA: Framber Valdez 2.36, Josiah Gray 3.00, Cristian Javier 3.13, Hunter Brown 3.69, MacKenzie Gore 4.04
SO: Framber Valdez 89, MacKenzie Gore 83, Hunter Brown 79, Cristian Javier 74, Josiah Gray 61
WHIP: Cristian Javier & Framber Valdez 1.06, Hunter Brown 1.21, Trevor Williams 1.36, MacKenzie Gore 1.39

Injury report
Houston Astros: Yordan Alvarez is on the 10-day IL, and according to Dana Brown, his return is “still up in the air a little bit,” according to Chandler Rome of the Athletic. Ryne Stanek remains on bereavement leave. Michael Brantley is on the 10-day IL, but hit in the cage, ran the bases, and made some throws last Thursday, according to Brian McTaggart. Lance McCullers Jr. is getting an MRI on Friday, according to Julia Morales. Luis Garcia underwent Tommy John Surgery on Friday. Forrest Whitley is listed as day-to-day, and was confirmed to be an option to join the Astros as a reliever once he’s healthy and activated from the Space Cowboys seven-day IL. Will Wagner got surgery on the hamate bone in his right hand, as reported by Chandler Rome. Jose Urquidy is on the 15-day IL but has been reported to be throwing from 90 feet, reported by Brian McTaggart.

Gametime & Starting Pitchers
Tuesday at 7:10 PM CT: (Patrick Corbin (4-6, 4.89) vs. Hunter Brown (5-3, 3.69)
Wednesday at 7:10 PM CT: (Josiah Gray (4-5, 3.00) vs. Framber Valdez (6-5, 2.36)
Thursday at 7:10 PM CT: MacKenzie Gore (3-5, 4.04) vs. Cristian Javier (7-1, 3.13)

Who’s hot (highest WPA vs. Guardians)
Phil Maton (.308)
Kyle Tucker (.278)
Jose Abreu (.205)
JP France (.149)
Hector Neris (.139)

Who’s not (lowest WPA vs. Guardians)
Brandon Bielak (-.204)
Chas McCormick (-.212)
Alex Bregman (-.226)
Ryan Pressly (-.267)
Seth Martinez (-.413)

Franchise Leaderboard Check

3) Lance Bergman 1008
4) Jose Altuve 999

45) Bill Spiers 241
46) Kyle Tucker 237

39) Morgan Ensberg & Bill Spiers 99
41) Michael Brantly & Kyle Tucker 98

Home Runs
45) Josh Reddick 48
46) Denny Walling 47
47) Geoff Blum & Martín Maldonado 46

11) Carlos Lee 533
12) Alex Bregman 529

35) Marvin Gonzalez & Craig Reynolds 300
37) Kyle Tucker 294

47) Jack Billingham & Charlie Morton 29
49) Luis Garcia 28
50) Cristian Javier & Chad Qualls 27


How many wins will Houston collect from the visiting Nationals?

This poll is closed

  • 39%
    (35 votes)
  • 40%
    (36 votes)
  • 12%
    (11 votes)
  • 6%
    (6 votes)
88 votes total Vote Now