We’ll check in some NL postseason hopefuls with two weeks to play in the regular season.
- Nationals right-hander Austin Voth has pitched himself into strong consideration for a spot on the club’s postseason roster as a multi-inning reliever, manager Dave Martinez tells Mark Zuckerman of MASN. Voth has started six of his seven MLB appearances this year, but he’s thus far maxed out at 80 pitches in September as he continues to build back up from a bout of biceps tendinitis. Working 4-5 innings at a time has clicked for Voth, who has put up a 16:4 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 12 innings this month. The Nats’ bullpen has taken its share of heat all season, so it isn’t surprising to hear Martinez contemplating giving the hot hand some important innings. Washington hasn’t yet locked down a postseason berth, of course, but Fangraphs gives them a 93.4% chance of getting to the NL Wild Card game.
- Washington’s NL East rival Philadelphia hasn’t completely closed the book on 2019, although they’re in a decidedly less favorable position. Sitting 3.5 games out in the Wild Card race with three teams to jump, Philly’s down to a 1.6% shot at the promised land, again per Fangraphs. With that in mind, the Athletic’s Matt Gelb takes a look at the Phillies’ outfield outlook for 2020, specifically through the lens of rookie Adam Haseley. The former eighth overall pick’s .263/.328/.413 slash (92 wRC+) doesn’t jump off the page at first glance, but Gelb notes it’s a surprisingly solid season for a player who was forced to the majors after just 18 Triple-A games due to unexpected developments among the big league club. The Citizens Bank Park grass could become jumbled again in 2020, depending on how the club handles Odúbel Herrera post-suspension and how they deploy utilityman Scott Kingery. It’s a worthwhile read (subscription only) for Philly fans turning their attention to next spring.
- The Brewers have climbed back to within one game of the Cubs in the NL Wild Card race, and Jordan Lyles is a big reason why, observes MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy. MLBTR’s Jeff Todd noted two weeks ago that Lyles’ deadline acquisition from the division-rival Pirates was proving to be a quiet boon for the Brew Crew, and the tall righty has chipped in three sterling starts since then. As McCalvy notes, Lyles has made only small changes to his repertoire post-trade; indeed, catcher Yasmani Grandal attributed Lyles’ breakout to improved consistency in pitch execution and better sequencing. Soon to turn 29, Lyles is ticketed for free agency again this winter, where he figures to do better than the $2.05MM deal he wrapped up with Pittsburgh his last go-round.