The New York Mets and the Washington Nationals can spend the rest of the weekend comparing their respective injury lists, both of which continue to grow. The Nationals hope to have Ryan Zimmerman back in the lineup sometime this weekend and will try to even the series at one win apiece when they host the Mets on Saturday.
Zimmerman hurt his shoulder sliding into home plate in Thursday’s win over the Houston Astros and sat out Friday as Washington fell to New York 4-2. “I think he hurt his arm or shoulder,” Nationals manager Dusty Baker told reporters. “Really couldn’t swing. I don’t anticipate he’ll be much better (Saturday), but hopefully on Sunday.” The Mets lost their own middle-of-the-order slugger on Friday when Yoenis Cespedes went down with a right hamstring strain, one game after Michael Conforto went down with a shoulder injury. New York will send right-hander Robert Gsellman to the mound on Saturday while Washington counters with surging lefty Gio Gonzalez.
TV: 4:05 p.m. ET, Fox Sports 1, SNY (New York), MASN 2 (Washington)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Mets RH Robert Gsellman (5-5, 5.65 ERA) vs. Nationals LH Gio Gonzalez (12-5, 2.39)
Gsellman is winless in his last five turns but pitched well enough to win on Monday, when he held the Arizona Diamondbacks to one run on five hits in 6 1/3 innings in a no-decision. The 24-year-old is making his third start since rejoining the team on Aug. 16 and surrendered a total of three earned runs and nine hits in 11 2/3 innings since his return. Gsellman was not as sharp against Washington on June 15, when he was lit up for seven runs and 11 hits in five innings.
Gonzalez dominated in his last four starts, allowing a total of two runs over 27 2/3 innings to cruise to wins in each outing. The Florida native struck out eight and issued only one walk in 6 2/3 innings at San Diego on Sunday and did not yield a home run in any of the last four outings. Gonzalez is making his third start of the season against New York and earned the win in the first two while surrendering a total of three runs and seven hits in 13 1/3 innings.
1. Cespedes will be examined in New York on Monday and could be lost for the rest of the season.
2. Nationals RHP Max Scherzer (neck) threw a bullpen session on Friday and could return as soon as Sunday.
3. Washington 2B Daniel Murphy is 4-for-31 in his last eight games.
PREDICTION: Nationals 6, Mets 1