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Tonight's Matchup: Brewers (Gorzelanny) v Nationals (Zimmermann)

While waiting in line for your $10 voucher at Miller Park, read about tonight's series opener.

Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

Tonight is the first game of the Brewers' announced plan to give every ticketholder a $10 voucher at the ballpark. That certainly could be interesting.

Once those fans get to their seats (hopefully before 7:10) they'll get to see Tom Gorzelanny (2.83 ERA, 3.81 FIP) making his sixth Brewer start. Gorzelanny was roughed up a bit but emerged victorious against the Rockies on Saturday, allowing four runs on six hits over 5.1 innings. He walked one and struck out four in that game.

For a guy who wasn't expected to see significant time in the rotation this season, Gorzelanny has pitched pretty well in a starting role. He has a 3.52 ERA after four starts, walking just five and striking out 22 over 23 innings during that span. Overall his 2.83 ERA is the lowest of his career, although he also posted a low number (2.88) as a reliever with the Nationals last season.

As I just mentioned, Gorzelanny was a member of the Nationals in 2011 and 2012. He's also faced them twice this year in relief, allowing just one run on a single hit over 3.2 combined innings with two walks and two strikeouts. Two current Nats have faced him ten times or more:

Scott Hairston 17 .200 .294 .267 .561
Jayson Werth 11 .300 .364 .300 .664

He'll face righthander Jordan Zimmermann (3.19 ERA, 3.41 FIP), who by now you'll likely recall is a native of Auburndale, Wisconsin*. Zimmermann is making his 103rd career major league start, his 22nd of 2013 and his first since Friday, when he allowed five runs on six hits over 6.2 innings against the Mets.

* - If you're worried you'll forget, it's ok. I'm sure BA and Rock will remind you ceaselessly tonight.

If Zimmermann has one flaw in his armor, it might be the long ball. He's given up multiple homers in three of his last five appearances and eleven overall in his last 67.1 innings. He has a 4.81 ERA over that time. He'll throw a mid-90's fastball but also works in a heavy dose of sliders (about 20% of all pitches) along with a curve and the occasional changeup.

Zimmermann beat the Brewers on July 1, holding them to four runs on nine hits over six innings with no walks and five strikeouts. Juan Francisco and Rickie Weeks homered in that game. No current Brewers have faced Zimmermann ten times or more.

As of this writing I haven't seen tonight's lineup. If you have, please drop it in the comments.

And in the bullpen:

  • Rob Wooten pitched one inning (12 pitches) on Wednesday, and also pitched on Monday and Tuesday.
  • Alfredo Figaro pitched two innings (26 pitches) on Wednesday.
  • Jim Henderson, Brandon Kintzler, Burke Badenhop, John Axford and Michael Gonzalez all last pitched on Tuesday.

It should be a nice night for baseball in Milwaukee tonight. Expect a game time temperature around 75 under mostly cloudy skies with winds blowing out to left.