WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 08: Members of the grounds crew hold down the tarp during a rain delay start of the Washington Nationals and Baltimore Orioles game at Nationals Park on July 8, 2014 in Washington, DC.
(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Bill Ladson who covers the Washington Nationals for MLB.com joined the Scott Garceau show with Jeremy Conn to preview the Orioles one game set with the Nationals on Monday. Scott asked Bill about the starter for the Nationals Taylor Rourke who has been quietly successful this year. Bill also did sneak in a prediction for the birds. “No question, I don’t think anyone thought he would be leading in wins at this point I think he has 11 wins… But I think if the Orioles get some starting pitching they’re a World Series contender.”
Nationals phenom Bryce Harper has been scuffling in the words of Scott and Jeremy, and has spent a ton of time on the bench this year. Bill thinks the outfielders struggles stem back to Harpers injury last year. “It’s been up and down no question about it… It looks to me like he’s scared out there, like he doesn’t want to get hit again like he did against the dodgers.”
The National League is also stacked with great pitching, Bill thinks that the Nats rotation could be the best in the league if a couple of players can get it together. “I worry about Strasburg and I worry about Gio Gonzalez because they have been inconsistent. If they get it together they could have one of the best rotations in baseball.”
The National League East is very comparable with the American League East in terms of standings, Two teams are tight at the top with some teams on the fringe. Currently the Nats are being chased down by the Braves and everyone seems to think that this is a huge series for Washington. “I think it’s very key for the Nationals to sweep this series. If they sweep this series then they win the division.”