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MLB Washington Nationals

Pitching Carrying Washington Nationals As Predicted

Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Everyone knew that the Washington Nationals would have strong pitching again in 2013. I didn’t expect to see the Nationals give up just one run in their sweep of the Miami Marlins to start the season though. The Nationals should be able to ride their pitching into the playoffs this season, and if they can keep doing what they did to start the year, everyone needs to watch out.

Stephen Strasburg only needed 80 pitches to go seven innings while Gio Gonzalez even hit a home run while giving up no runs. Jordan Zimmermann may have given up the lone run on a long ball, but this is crazy to see. Miami isn’t going to be a scoring machine this season because of their complete rebuild, but you had to expect that they would score more than just one run against the Washington pitching staff. The Nationals haven’t even got to Dan Haren in their rotation, who could be a great fourth starter if he can stay healthy all year.

This is a scary pitching staff with the Nationals and one that is going to lead Washington to at least 95 wins in the regular season. Strasburg could win 20 games along with Gonzalez and Zimmermann may win 15-18 games himself. I can’t think of many teams that can boast three starters like that this year. The playoffs will be the true story for this team, though, and if their starters can hold up under the pressure. The Nationals didn’t have Strasburg last season, but will have their ace all year this time around. I wouldn’t want to deal with the Nationals at all in 2013 because they may have dreams of a World Series.

Andy Schmidt is a columnist/writer for RantSports. Follow him on Twitter @ASchmidtSports, like his Facebook page or add him to your network on Google.