Preview: Hyun-Jin Ryu, Dodgers Face Anibal Sanchez in NLDS Game 3


As the 2019 NLDS shifted gears to the nation’s capital, the biggest question mark was which pitcher the Nationals would start against the Dodgers in Game 3.

Manager Dave Martinez certainly took his time weighing his options. Nevertheless, the skipper announced to the media early Sunday afternoon that he would hand the ball to veteran righty Anibal Sanchez.

Game 3 about the closest thing to a must-win for the Dodgers without being an elimination game.

By awarding the start to Sanchez on Sunday, the Washington rotation sets up with staff ace Max Scherzer throwing Game 4 on Monday, also in Washington. What’s more, the move could conceivably allow the Nats to counter with Stephen Strasburg should there be a need for a Game 5 in Los Angeles on Wednesday.

The 35-year-old Sanchez has a full repertoire of pitches, as is the case with most veterans his age. He mixes a four-seam, a change, a cutter/slider, a curve and occasionally, a sinker.

According to Brooks Baseball, his heater sits around 91 MPH, topping out at around 93 MPH. His four-seam and change are his most used offerings. His cutter is decent, as it has very strong movement and excellent rise action, resulting in more fly balls compared to most pitchers. At best, the remainder of his arsenal is average with few remarkable qualities.

After dealing with hamstring issues during the early stages of 2019, Sanchez eventually rebounded and slotted in consistently as Washington’s fourth starter. For the entirety of the regular season, he tallied an 11-8 record with a 3.85 ERA and a 4.44 FIP with 134 walks in 30 starts over an even 166 innings. He walked 58 batters this year.

In seven career postseason starts with the Tigers and the Braves, Sanchez has a 2-5 record with a 3.12 ERA and a 1.177 WHIP.

Lifetime against the Dodgers, the native of Venezuela has made nine starts, posting a 1-2 record with a 3.53 ERA and 41 strikeouts over 51 innings.

Hyun-Jin Ryu, who is still considered by some to be among the front-runners for the National League Cy Young Award, has made two career starts at Nationals Park and has surrendered just one earned run over 11-1/3 innings pitched.

Over five career starts against the Nats, Ryu has put together a 2-1 record with a 1.35 ERA and 30 punchouts over 33-1/3 innings of work.

First pitch for Game 3 is set for 7:45 PM Eastern time.


24 thoughts on “Preview: Hyun-Jin Ryu, Dodgers Face Anibal Sanchez in NLDS Game 3

  1. Sanchez is 1-3 against the Dodgers in his career. I think DC thinks he will be better in his home park. Dodgers yet to allow a HR by a DC hitter in this series. Lets hope that remains the case. Anyway, they need Bellinger, Pollock and Seager to start hitting the ball.


      1. Hey Pack, glad you found us, I think you will find the atmosphere in here a lot more to your liking.


    1. I’ll settle for two of those three.
      Meanwhile I hope Kenley isn’t watching the Cards-Braves game in the clubhouse. After giving up three runs in Game 2 and almost blowing the game, Martinez was brought in to save a 1-0 Cards lead in the 9th just now and gave up another three runs. Yikes!


      1. Kenley hasn’t pitched in over a week. I think they’d like to get him some work tonight but let’s hope we have a nice lead when that happens.


    1. Cody will feel a lot better going into tomorrows game with Scherzer on the mound. I believe they are going to have to beat him or Strasburg to win this thing. I hope they just finish it against Scherzer tomorrow.


      1. He wasn’t pulled because no one was ready to come in.
        Roberts should have made sure that every time he brought another pitcher in there was someone throwing behind him in the pen. Horrible bullpen management. The Nats (or rather Kendrick) gave us a huge gift there.
        With a 6 run lead I would have used Stripling in the hopes he might go three innings and save some arms.


      2. With the AB right there, we know that Urias will go at least two. Then maybe Petey and Kenley, with a little Kolarek sprinkled in. The way this game is going, though, who knows.


      3. Somebody should have been getting loose after the first two guys were walked. It was immediately obvious Kelly wasn’t right. You don’t let these guys believe they can get back into it. We were lucky to get out of that with only 2 scored.

        Hey pack. Good to see you. Your voice will be welcomed here.


  2. I think doc was trying to nurse him through the inning because the pitchers spot was due to start the inning, but that’s a bad reason to stick with a pitcher that didn’t have it tonight. Thank god for Howie Kendrick.


    1. Kendrick has spent his whole career being dependable, not making mistakes. He’s made three of them in the three games so far, one on the bases and two in the field. So far anyway, he’s been our lucky charm. We need to go into today’s game as though it were Game 5 and do whatever we can not to have to face Strasburg on Wednesday. And I say that knowing that today we go against Scherzer and that’s no easy task either. This series is very winnable, but it won’t be easy.


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