ST. LOUIS - It's safe to say this is not how Edwin Jackson envisioned his return to St. Louis going.
Facing the team he helped to a World Series title last season, Jackson went just 1 1/3 innings tonight, allowing nine runs (eight earned) on seven hits. He walked four and struck out none, and leaves with the Nationals trailing 9-1.
Those of you who were still wrapping up dinner during the early innings, you missed a bit of action.
It was clear from the start that Jackson just wasn't there. He was all over the place, allowing the first six hitters he faced to reach base, and threw two wild pitches.
Jackson didn't get the benefit of great defensive play behind him, but he also gave away way too many free bases, and nearly every ball put in play against him was hit hard.
This is Jackson's worst start of the year, eclipsing a three-inning outing he had against the Rockies back on June 28, in which he allowed eight runs on 10 hits.
His ERA jumps .36 points tonight alone, going from 3.77 to 4.13. That's pretty tough to do in late September.
Jackson's ERA over his five September starts is 7.92. He was excellent his last time out, throwing eight innings of one-run ball and striking out six, but for every great start the last couple months, he's followed it with a couple mediocre ones.
I know manager Davey Johnson has a long memory and believes in guys who have proven themselves over the course of their careers, but you have to wonder if Ross Detwiler is becoming the favorite for the No. 3 spot in the rotation come postseason time.
Tom Gorzelanny replaces Jackson in the second.