There is no team in Major League Baseball with higher expectations this year than the Washington Nationals. The 2015 season has become a World Series or bust year for the federal city’s team thanks to the addition of baseball’s most hotly pursued free agent pitcher, Max Scherzer. The addition of Scherzer sends Tanner Roark, who went 15-10 with a 2.85 ERA, to the bullpen. That is how good the Nationals rotation is.
There injury bug has already bitten the Nationals, with Anthony Rendon, Denard Span, and Jayson Werth on the shelf to start the season. Span got back in the action this weekend in a minor league game, as did Werth. There has been no timetable set for the return of Rendon, who is dealing with a knee injury.
The Nationals’ season started on a bit of a sour note yesterday, as the Mets downed the World Series hopefuls by a score of 3-1. The loss was fueled by two errors by shortstop Ian Desmond. Scherzer carried a no-hitter into the sixth, but ultimately was let down by his defense. All three runs allowed in his 7 2/3 innings were unearned.
After an Opening Day loss, there is no reason to panic in Nats Town. This team has billed themselves as a World Series contender, and that is exactly what they are. Here are my five bold predictions for the rest of the Nationals’ 2015 season.