Gio Gonzalez (19-8, 2.95) has been one of my favorite pitchers in the MLB since his rookie season with Oakland. Now with the Nationals and in his 5th major league year, Gonzalez has really cashed in on his talent, placing himself as a frontrunner for the National League Cy Young award. He leads all NL pitchers in fWAR. His 2.95 ERA is sixth among NL starters. His 2.87 FIP is second only to teammate Stephen Strasburg and his 195 strikeouts are fifth in the league.
Those strikeouts give him a 9.47 K/9 on the season. He has always had trouble with walks, but has brought his BB/9 to a career low 3.48 this season. He has also been excellent at limiting home runs, with a 0.43 HR/9. Gonzalez has also been excellent recently, with a 1.00 ERA in his last four starts. He has averaged just under four hits per start over that span and has 29 strikeouts in 28 innings.
Gonzalez throws three pitches primarily: A 93 MPH four seamer (36%), a 93 MPH two seamer (36%), and an 80 MPH curveball (21%). He has yet to face a Brewers hitter at least ten times.
For the Brewers, Wily Peralta (2-0, 2.14) will make his fourth start. Despite a fairly mediocre 5.57 K/9 so far this season, Peralta sports a 2.73 FIP. Much of that stems from his not having given up a home run this year as his xFIP stands at 3.63. Peralta had his best start of the season his last outing, against the Mets. He gave up just two hits and a walk in eight innings while striking out five. He did not allow any runs. Peralta has yet to face a Nationals hitter at least ten times.
I pre-wrote this last night, so I have not seen a lineup.
In the bullpen:
John Axford pitched one inning (19 pitches) yesterday and also pitched on Wednesday and Thursday.
Jim Henderson pitched one inning (14 pitches) yesterday.
Jose Veras pitched one inning (16 pitches) yesterday.
Brandon Kintzler pitched two innings (34 pitches) Thursday.
Manny Parra pitched one inning (14 pitches) Thursday.
Francisco Rodriguez pitched one inning (14 pitches) Thursday.
Kameron Loe pitched .1 innings (13 pitches) Thursday.
Tyler Thornburg, Josh Stinson and Livan Hernandez all haven't pitched in a week.