Dodgers @ Nationals May 23, 2022: Tyler Anderson starts as Trea Turner returns to Washington

After a completely avoidable 4-3 walkoff loss to the Phillies (19-22) yesterday, the Dodgers (27-13) seven game winning streak was snapped, and they still lead the NL West by half a game over the San Diego Padres (27-14). There are seven games remaining on this roadstead, with three games against the Nationals (14-28), and four games against the Diamondbacks (19-21). The Nationals are the second worst team in baseball, ahead of only the Reds (12-28). Trea Turner will be back in Washington for the first time since being traded to the Dodgers, while the team will face Keibert Ruiz, as well as Josiah Gray who will be starting tomorrow. Tonight’s game features Tyler Anderson against the 23 year-old righty, Joan Adon.

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4:05 PM Washington D.C.
RF Betts CF Thomas
1B Freeman (L) C Ruiz (S)
SS T. Turner RF Soto (L)
DH Ríos (L) DH Cruz
C Smith 1B Bell (S)
3B Muncy (L) LF Hernandez (L)
CF Bellinger (L) 3B Franco
LF Taylor 2B Hernández (S)
2B Lux (L) SS Escobar
P Anderson (L) P Adon (R)

Here’s how these two offenses compare.

The Nationals will be facing Anderson, and against left-handed pitching they are 25th in wRC+ at 82 and 24th in OPS at .635. Against right-handed pitching, the Dodgers have the highest wRC+ in baseball at 122, as well as the highest OPS at .769. Overall, their best hitters have been Juan Soto (139 wRC+), Yadiel Hernandez (134), Josh Bell (129), and old friend Keibert Ruiz (112). By wRC+, those are their only four batters that are above average, but Soto is good enough to blow a game open by himself, and Bell is a dangerous hitter as well.

The Dodgers feature eight batters above average by wRC+, with Gavin Lux just below (99 wRC+), with Max Muncy slightly below (89), and Justin Turner has been heating up and is currently up to an 81 wRC+. Mookie Betts has been on a tear. He’s leading the Dodgers in fWAR at 2.2, and wRC+ at 153. His ten home runs trail just C.J. Cron (11) for the NL lead. Outside of his first eleven games, he has a 192 wRC+, slashing .312/.392/.651. He’s been impressive in the outfield as well, looking like the five time gold-glover. Superstar.

Advantage Dodgers.

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Here’s how Anderson and Adon matchup.

Anderson (4-0) earned the victory his last time out, allowing two runs on seven hits with seven strikeouts in seven innings against Arizona. Both of his runs allowed came in the first inning, allowing back to back home runs to Jordan Luplow and Christian Walker (Barry Bonds). He needed just 82 pitches to get through seven innings in what was likely his best start as a Dodger, a big bounce back start compared to his previous one against the Phillies. His walk rate is fantastic, and his 34 strikeouts to just five walks is a great ratio, with his six home runs allowed in 35.2 innings being the main reason his ERA sits at 4.04. His ERA would be better if he were pulled before he gave up seven runs in his start against the Phillies, but with the rotation and bullpen needing rest, that was a “wear it” start where the team just needed innings, and he was able to provide that despite the runs allowed. He’s been good for the Dodgers despite that start and outside of that start has put them in a position to win every game he’s been in. Hence, his 4-0 record. He’s been filling the rotation spot left by Andrew Heaney, but has likely done enough to remain in the rotation once Heaney returns. As Clayton Kershaw returns and Danny Duffy is close, his role will be to be determined, but in the meantime he’s been solid and looks to remain where he is.

The Nationals are bad. Adon is 1-7, tied with teammate Patrick Corbin for the most losses in baseball. Yikes. His last time out, he took another loss although he allowed just one run on five hits over 4.2 innings against the Marlins. His strikeout to walk ratio is brutal, with 31 strikeouts and 23 walks in 36.2 innings. Part of the reason the young pitcher has the ERA and record he does, is due to that he’s primarily a two pitch pitcher. He sits in the mid 90’s with his fastball, but as he throws it nearly 70% of the time and has had serious issues with command, batters can wait on that pitch. His primary off speed offering is a curve that’s averaging 79.3 MPH that he throws 20% of the time. He throws a changeup 7% of the time, but it’s so infrequent of an offering that hitters can almost entirely avoid that pitch. He’s just 23 and has room to improve obviously, but it hasn’t been a good start for him thus far.

Once again, advantage Dodgers. As they have the clear advantage offensively and on the mound, expect them to get blown out just like they did against the Pirates.

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Great news for Heaney.

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The team is 27-13 and Max Muncy has been an integral role of the team for the last few years. He has time to figure it out.

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Make it happen.

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Six prospects in the MLB Pipeline Top 100, with five of the six moving up in the rankings.

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First pitch is at 4:05 PM PDT on SNLA and on MLB Network.

About Allan Yamashige

Just a guy living in Southern California, having a good time writing about baseball. Hated baseball practice as a kid, but writing about it rules. Thanks for reading!