After Ryan Vogelsong was touched up for eight runs — six earned — on six hits and two walks over three innings last night against the Blue Jays, there was speculation that the Giants would skip him in the starting rotation, but manager Bruce Bochy isn’t ready to go there yet.
According to Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com, Vogelsong and Bochy met today and it was decided that he will make his next scheduled start Monday against the Nationals. The struggling right-hander has volunteered to pitch out of the bullpen this weekend against the Rockies, so there’s a chance that things will change, but Bochy is willing to give him the opportunity to pitch his way out of his funk.
After posting a 3.05 ERA from 2011-2012, Vogelsong is dead-last among qualified starters this season with an 8.06 ERA. He has allowed 11 home runs in just 41 1/3 innings so far after giving up 17 in 189 2/3 innings last season and 15 in 179 2/3 innings in 2011.
Nationals GM Mike Rizzo said on Tuesday that starter Stephen Strasburg is unlikely to pitch in the NLDS against the Dodgers, Chase Hughes of CSN Mid-Atlantic reports. Strasburg hasn’t pitched since September 7 due to a strained flexor mass.
Strasburg was pitching well before a few poor starts prior to being shut down in August. He currently holds a 3.60 ERA with a 183/44 K/BB ratio in 147 2/3 innings.
The Nationals signed Strasburg to a seven-year, $175 million contract extension in May. This was obviously not how they invisioned his 2016 campaign going.
Nationals starter A.J. Cole has been fined an undisclosed amount and suspended five games by Major League Baseball for intentionally throwing at Pirates third baseman Jung Ho Kang on Sunday, Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post reports. Cole is appealing his suspension.
Kang faked a tag on Bryce Harper, who was coming into third base on a triple. The fake-out caused Harper to slide awkwardly, injuring his left thumb. The Nationals took exception to this and Cole threw a fastball that ended sailing behind Kang’s back during his next at-bat. Cole was ejected and both benches emptied. There was some yelling and some light pushing and shoving, but nothing beyond that.
Cole will remain active until his appeal is heard, which may allow him to make one more start before the end of the regular season. He’s carrying a 5.09 ERA with a 37/14 K/BB ratio in 35 1/3 innings over seven starts this season.