Can't they please do a little switcheroo? Give Detwiler another day off so we can have Strasburg/Hudson, instead of Hudson/Detwiler and Strasburg/Minor? At least Beachy/Gonzalez is there as the match-up between surprise Cy Young candidates
Back to the scuffling Detwiler, who's got a 5.40 ERA in his last 5 starts. Remember when I said Detwiler's personal stats might be showing some real signs of improvement? Yeah, forget that. His GB%, which was a big part of his success early, has dropped from 64.3% to 54.5%. 54.5% is still probably around what the Nats want, but really this means in his past 5 games he's been under 50%. His career numbers suggest he isn't a ground ball type so I'm guessing those early games were flukes. Same goes for his K-rate, which over the same time is more around the 5 K/9 level that has been his career average up until now. He has continued his minor improvement in BB-rate but it's real small.
As far as more general stats, his BABIP has come up to a more normal range these past 5 games and his HR-rate has actually declined. That was already low - this can't last. The digners are coming. On the bright side for Detwiler, he's gotten pretty unlucky with runners scoring. His LOB % dropped from 73.5% to 63.3%. 63.3% itself is low, what he must have been averaging (guess in the 58% range) the last few games is fluky unlucky. This makes sense though. Yes, Detwiler isn't a 0.68 pitcher, but he isn't a 5.40 pitcher either. He's a 4.00 + guy... most likely. Still it's only been 8 games, a quarter of a season, so if I were in charge he'd get at least till the All-Star break to see if he really is the "no reason to screw over John Lannan" type starter that we assumed he was.
Of course he won't get that chance because Chien-Ming Wang is chomping at the bit to get in the rotation. And by "chomping at the bit" I mean, "Rizzo signed the guy, he's got no options, and the Lerners are paying a lot of money for him; so there are absolutely no circumstantial reasons for Wang not to be pitching every 5th day". In reality 32 yr old Wang is about Detwiler (who like we just said is about Lannan) but Detwiler is cheap so he'll get the boot if he can't throw a good game. I'd expect Wang to get in this game if Ross struggles early, Wang to get the next start if Ross struggles at all. If he pitches well? I'm not sure what the Nats do. I guess just stick Wang in long relief until they get the excuse they need from Detwiler or an injury.
I say enough of this pussyfooting around. You want the best pitching staff in the league? Trade for (and then sign - or just wait until next year and sign) Zack Greinke. I'd take this offense with Strasburg, Gio, Greinke, and ZNN as the Top 4. Oh wait, dammit! He's not a Boras client. What about Hamels? He's almost as good and.. no, no Rizzo hates him now and again not a Boras client. Jamie Shields... no. (checking, checking) Ok well an early "Welcome" to Kyle Lohse, Derek Lowe, or Dice-K the Nats 2013 5th starter.