Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Are The Nationals World Series Favorites?

For the second time in three years the Washington Nationals are in the playoffs! Two seasons ago, Washington was a team happy to be there and lost in the first round in heart breaking fashion. Now they are more experienced and are one of the favorites to win the World Series. Here are some reasons why the Nationals could bring DC its first baseball title in 90 years.

  • They lead the majors in team ERA, starting pitcher ERA, and are second in bullpen ERA
  • They set an all-time record for strikeout to walk ratio at 3.66-1
  • They are in the top four in the NL in runs scored, home runs and on base percentage
  • They are coming into the playoffs peaking at the right time, having won 15 of 20 and 21 of 30, both tops in the MLB, and ended the season on their first ever no-hitter
  • Drew Storen reclaimed his closer role in early September and converted 10 consecutive save opportunities and hasn’t given up an earned run in 23 appearances
  • Even the experts are picking the Nat’s to win it all. (11 of 15 on ESPN and 2 of 5 on Fox)

What’s preventing the Nationals from cruising all the way to a title? Oh yea, there are other teams in the playoffs.

  • The Nats are only 17-20 against the teams that made the playoffs, a .459 winning percentage which is second to worst of the 10 teams
  • They have been outscored 159-131 against playoff teams, a -28 margin that is third worst

So while Washington has put up great stats and look like the favorite on paper, I am a little hesitant to crown them champs already.