The Los Angeles Dodgers continue their road trip to begin the second half of the season with a three game series against the Washington Nationals beginning Tuesday. The last time the Dodgers squared off with the Nationals, they completed an impressive three game sweep.

The Boys in Blue are currently 5.5 games behind that team from up north, and a repeat performance would be very timely. The Dodgers are in Washington before heading off to St. Louis to take on the Cardinals for 3-games.

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The first game of the series will feature Scott Kazmir pitching for the first time in 10 days. Kazmir is going against Reynaldo Lopez of the Nationals. To say that Kazmir has been inconsistent this season is insulting to inconsistent pitchers. When he’s been on, he’s been nearly un-hittable, however, when he’s not … well, its been better to avert your eyes.

He is 7-3 but has an ERA of 4.52 and a WHIP of 1.32. This will be Lopez’s first career start after he has accrued an ERA of 3.15 over his five years across all levels of the minors.

On Wednesday, we will see the second start of Hyun-Jin Ryu after almost two seasons on the DL with a shoulder injury. Unfortunately, he was less than stelar in his season debut before the All-Star break, but it was always going to be asking a lot to have him come back as though nothing had happened. He will match up with Gio Gonzalez who has been notoriously hard on the Dodgers throughout his career.

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The Dodgers haven’t announced who will take the mound for them on Thursday, but whoever it is will have a tall task.

The Nationals will be throwing out Stephen Strasburg who currently boasts an almost unfathomable 12-0 record.

A pitcher from the NL hasn’t started a season 13-0 since 1912 (still more recent than the Cubbies winning a World Series, sorry Chicago).

The all-time mark was set by Roger Clemons in 1986 when he posted a 14-0 record to start the season. So while the odds look to be stacked against any team going against Stras, hopefully the Dodgers will be the first team to hand him a loss.

First pitch is set 4:05 PM PST Tuesday at Nationals Park in Washington.

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