Zeile: Strasburg Is "The Right Guy" For Nationals

The Nats are reeling, but they still have a chance to win the World Series

Taz and the Moose
October 29, 2019 - 10:23 am
Stephen Strasburg Nats Astros World Series

USA Today Images


After three straight World Series losses – on their home field, no less – the Washington Nationals will pin their championship hopes on Stephen Strasburg in Game 6 in Houston on Tuesday.

“I think Strasburg is the right guy for the Nats,” SNY MLB analyst Todd Zeile said on Taz & The Moose. “I’d actually rather have Strasburg on the mound than anybody else in that rotation. He’s been a bulldog, he’s been a horse all year, he did a great job holding them down even when he got in trouble last time around in Houston, he already threw a good game in Houston, and Verlander is trying to get that monkey off his back. Sure, he’s going to be determined, but at the same time, I think there’s a little bit of an opening for the Nats tonight if they can get another great performance out of Strasburg.”

Strasburg has started five games this postseason. He is 4-0 with a 1.93 ERA, a 0.96 WHIP and has 40 strikeouts in 28.0 innings.

In other words, he is just what the doctor ordered for the Nationals, who fell apart after taking a 2-0 series lead.

“When they were coming into this World Series having rested, they were loose because they had nothing to lose; they were the underdog,” Zeile said. “When you’re that guy, you can go out there and you can swing for the fences and take haymaker blows all the time. And then all of a sudden you win one and then you win another one and you’re like, ‘Oh, now there’s some expectation on us,’ and you begin to play a little bit differently at times. It’s a very subtle difference, but the difference between playing with nothing to lose and playing now with expectation can sometimes change the way you approach the ballgame.”

Game 6 is Tuesday at 8:07 p.m. ET. Game 7, if necessary, is Wednesday at 8:08 p.m. ET.