Ryan Zimmerman’s two home runs and four RBI helped the Nationals defeat the Los Angeles Dodgers 7-1 at Nationals Park on September 17th.
Here’s a four pack of Nats’ notes as the regular season enters its final two weeks and the Nationals prepare for their fourth playoff appearance in the last six seasons.
WHY STOP AT ONE?
Ryan Zimmerman’s two home run game against the Dodgers last night was the 22nd multi-home run game of his career and a team record tying sixth so far in the 2017 season. The two home run game tied Zimmerman with Adam Dunn, who had six in 2010, for the most in a season in Nats’ history.
The Face of the Franchise’s 22 games with more than one home run is easily the high mark in Nats’ history. Teammate Bryce Harper is next with 15, including five so far in the 2017 season, with Dunn and Adam LaRoche tied for third with eight each.
Zimmerman’s previous high for multi-homer games in a season was five, set in 2010. This season and the 2010 campaign are the only years in which Zimmerman has had more than two such games.
Stephen Strasburg won his 14th game on Sunday, moving him within one victory of his career season high of 15, set in 2012 and equaled last season.
Since 2015, only two pitchers have a higher winning percentage than Strasburg’s .727 (40-15 record) among pitchers with at least 30 decisions. Both pitchers ahead of Strasburg in this category are also headed to post-season play. Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers is first with a .763 percentage (45-14), while Arizona’s Zack Greinke is second at .754 (45-16).
Strasburg’s 2017 WAR of 5.8 shatters his previous career high of 3.5 (set in 2014), and his 1.027 WHIP is well below his solid 1.084 career mark in that category.
STARRING IN A PINCH
Since he had a big go ahead home run in the Nationals’ 2017 season opener against Miami, veteran Adam Lind has been a valuable piece of the Nats’ high powered offense.
Last night against the Dodgers, the sweet swinging lefty hit his Nats’ record fourth pinch-hit home run of the season. Lind’s four pinch-hit blasts ties him with Colorado’s Pat Valaika for the Major League lead this season. Lind’s 1.063 OPS is the top mark in the Majors among pinch-hitters with at least 40 at bats
With 13 pinch-hit RBI so far in 2017, Lind has topped the Nats’ previous season high of 12 set by Tony Batista in 2007.
With 40 two base hits so far this year, Nats’ second baseman Daniel Murphy trails only Colorado’s Nolan Arenado (who has 42) among National Leaguers. Murphy, who led the National League with 47 doubles in 2016, can be the first Senior Circuit player since Craig Biggio in 1998 and 1999 to lead the league in back to back seasons if he is able to wrest the lead from Arenado.
Happy 38th birthday to 2006 Nationals’ pitcher Billy Traber. The left-handed Californian went 4–3 with a 6.44 ERA in 43.1 innings pitched for the Nationals in their second season.
Traber’s finest moment as a National came on August 11, 2016 when he allowed only four hits and one run in seven innings pitched to defeat Tom Glavine and the Mets by a 2-1 score.