Dodgers vs Nationals Pre-Game: Let’s play two

The Dodgers will have to play Game Two of this series at least thirty minutes after finishing Game One of the double-header today. This could benefit the Dodgers in a way, playing the best team in baseball in two games back-to-back, which could tire them out for this second game. It could also do the same to the Dodgers, who have looked tired over the last couple of weeks. If the Dodgers can take both of these games it would be a huge boost in the wild-card standings, but let’s look at the starters for Game Two.

The pitching match-up in Game Two of the double-header will be Josh Beckett against John Lannan.

Lannan has been extremely impressive in his short stint this season with the Nationals, posting a 3-0 record in three starts with a 2.41 ERA. It has been tough for Lannan spending most of his time this year in the minors, but has made the best of his opportunities. He adds to an already dominant pitching staff, even without Stephen Strasburg.

Unfortunately, Lannan has dominated the Dodgers in his career, with a 4-1 record and a 2.64 ERA lifetime against them.

The Dodgers send Beckett to the mound, hoping to get a big game out of him. He has pitched well for the most part as a member of the Dodgers, posting a 1-2 record with a 3.38 ERA. The run support just hasn’t been there for any Dodgers pitcher as of late.

In his last three outings, Beckett is 1-1 with a 2.95 ERA. It should be a good pitching match-up tonight, considering Beckett has dominated the Nationals, with a 7-2 record and a 2.37 ERA against them in his career.

Who will continue their dominance tonight?

Los Angeles Dodgers (76-71) at Washington Nationals (89-57)
Josh Beckett (6-13, 4.94) vs John Lannan (3-0, 2.41)
Nationals Park, Washington, DC
30 minutes after Game One finishes, or 4:05 p.m. PST*, September 19, 2012
Radio: 570 AM (English), 1020 AM (Spanish)
*denotes whichever is later

Nationals’ Projected Starters:
P: John Lannan
C: Kurt Suzuki
1B: Adam LaRoche
2B: Danny Espinosa
SS: Ian Desmond
3B: Ryan Zimmerman
LF: Michael Morse
CF: Bryce Harper
RF: Jayson Werth

Key Bench Players: UT Steve Lombardozzi, OF Roger Bernadina

Keys to a Dodger Victory
Grind it out
The Dodgers need to find a way to win this second game, regardless of what happens in Game One. They can’t hang their heads after a loss and can’t be content with a win. They have to grind it out for 18 innings or more no matter what. If they can grind out two victories against the best team in baseball on the same day their confidence could skyrocket going forward.