Reynaldo Lopez — Moving On Up

by Sadie Mccarthy Julio 21, 2016, 1:02
Reynaldo Lopez — Moving On Up

He will face veteran lefty Scott Kazmir (78-4, 4.52 ERA) and will become the first Dominican pitcher signed and developed by the Nationals since the team moved to the Nation's Capital from Montreal. And so we will get to see yet another top pitching prospect get his chance to shine - and make no mistake, Lopez is just that. Unfortunately, that does not portend a great deal of certainty for fantasy owners. He has not started the last three games due to a hamstring injury.

After the inning, Kazmir headed straight to the locker room leading many to believe his night was done, but he made a surprising and triumphant return to the mound pitching scoreless innings in the sixth and seventh.

"Clayton doesn't pitch every day", manager Dave Roberts told after the Dodgers lost Sunday to Arizona. Utley drove in his third run of the night with a single in the eighth inning.

Over the weekend, the Yankees sent scouts to Triple-A Syracuse to watch the Nationals Triple-A team.

"The hope when you're down 7-1 is building an inning".

But as he got his sea legs under him, he demonstrated just why people are so high on him.

Hoping, when the ailment is a herniated disk, isn't the most reassured position.

"In my understanding - we had to depend on our minor league people for how he was throwing, because we didn't see him at all in Spring Training", Baker explained.

The Dodgers also improved to 12-6 since their ace pitcher was placed on the disabled list.

All that being said, the Nationals have a need in the bullpen, particularly with Sammy Solis hitting the DL.

Kazmir handed a 7-1 lead over to Chris Hatcher who promptly put some drama back into the game by failing to retire any of the three batters he faced in the eighth inning. He was promoted to Triple-A at the end of June, and made his first start there on June 30.

Jose Fernandez is always a possibility to leave the unstable Miami Marlins, but that asking price would be dizzying. Giolito and Ross' presence in the organization signals that Lopez won't have a long-term fit in the Nats rotation unless he absolutely dominates in his first few starts - but given his command issues in Triple-A, it's hard to see him doing that. They'll be in D.C. tonight. Thanks to his work this year, Lopez climbed to a personal-best 48th in Baseball America's newly updated Top 100 Prospects list. In a starting pitcher pot so shallow, he's even more appealing.

Bryce Harper also has a home run against the lefty in three at-bats, and Danny Espinosa has a homer in five at-bats against Kazmir. That's not an accident. I suspect the Nationals will make Giolito force their hand, given his uninspiring big league showing and his innings limit.

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