SAN DIEGO — If the Nationals win one of their next two games, they’ll finish their 11-game road trip no worse than one-game under .500 on the trip. I don’t want to overstate things because their overall record is what it is at 28-36 heading into tonight’s game, but that would be a remarkable west coast trip for the Nationals.
It won’t be a cakewalk. Tonight they’ll send lefty John Lannan to the mound to face fellow left-hander Clayton Richard. The last time Lannan took the mound against the Padres, it marked the start of a string of solid starts for him. It marked a change — one he’s admitted — in the way he trusts his sinker and it has made things flow for him remarkably well.
He’ll need his offense to support if in cavernous Petco Park if he wants to earn his fourth win of the season.
Here’s how the Nationals have done against Richard in the past:
Roger Bernadina: 1-for-2 (.500), 1 BB
Ian Desmond: 3-for-9 (.333), 2 HR, 2 RBI
Jayson Werth: 0-for-5, 1 BB
Michael Morse: 3-for-6 (.500), 2 RBI, 1 K
Danny Espinosa: 1-for-2 (.500), 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 BB
Wilson Ramos: 0-for-3
Rick Ankiel: 1-for-2 (.500), 1 K
Jerry Hairston Jr.: 0-for-4, 1 RBI
John Lannan: 0-for-5, 1 K
Alex Cora: 0-for-6, 1 BB, 2 K
Brian Bixler: 1-for-4 (.250), 1 BB
Ivan Rodriguez: 2-for-5 (.400), 1 RBI, 1 K