As the Washington Nationals close in on clinching the NL East, Marlins players and fans can only shake their heads and wonder at what could have been. The Fish can only help delay the inevitable by besting the Nats at this point, playing for pride and perhaps for a chance to finish at or above .500 for the first time in Marlins Park history and the first winning season since 2009.
Ordering up the bubbly for the Nationals is A.J. Cole, keeping that shit on ice for the Marlins will be Wei-Yin Chen.
|Team||Pitcher||ERA||FIP||Zips Projected ERA|
The Marlins get their first look at A.J. Cole in 2016 today. Cole is a Florida native and was committed to the University of Miami on a baseball scholarship before the Nationals offered him a record signing bonus (for the fourth round) to get him to come to their organization in 2010. After debuting last season, Cole has started five games for the Nats this year, producing middling results. He has a fastball that's been topping out at 91 MPH and a slider that he throws about 26% of the time during his starts. The jury is out as far as judging what kind of long term fixture he can be in the Washington rotation.
Wei-Yin Chen makes his long awaited return today from the disabled list, where he's been since way back on July 20th. With the Marlins handily out of things, the motivation to start Chen probably is more to get him some live action before the season closes, to hopefully have him ready to go for the start of 2017. I wouldn't expect him to go past five innings in this one.
|WASHINGTON NATIONALS||MIAMI MARLINS|
|Trea Turner - CF||Dee Gordon - 2B|
|Jayson Werth - LF||Marcell Ozuna - LF|
|Anthony Rendon - 3B||Martin Prado - 3B|
|Wilson Ramos - C||Christian Yelich - CF|
|Ryan Zimmerman - 1B||Giancarlo Stanton - RF|
|Chris Heisey - RF||Justin Bour - 1B|
|Danny Espinosa - SS||J.T. Realmuto - C|
|Wilmer Difo - 2B||Adeiny Hechavarria - SS|
|A.J. Cole - RHP||Wei-Yin Chen - LHP|
Bold Prediction: Chen pitches well enough but the pen coughs up the lead, Marlins fall 5-3.