Now that the Nationals have locked up the National League East title, they're going about preparing for the postseason.
Step one: sitting Gio Gonzalez.
Davey Johnson has decided to rest Gonzalez, tonight's scheduled starter, and will instead have left-handed reliever Tom Gorzelanny start against the Phillies.
Gonzalez could have started tonight and thrown just a couple innings to stay fresh for a possible Game 1 start Saturday or Sunday, but Johnson will instead give the ball to Gorzelanny, who has appeared in 44 games this season, all in relief.
That would leave Gonzalez pitching on either seven or eight days rest going into a Saturday or Sunday start. When he pitches on six or more days rest this season, Gonzalez is 1-2 with a 3.98 ERA in four starts.
One side factor here is that this likely wraps up the regular season campaign for Gonzalez, preventing him from improving his numbers in his bid for the Cy Young Award.
Gonzalez is currently 21-8 with a 2.89 ERA in 199 1/3 innings. He's struck out 207, walked 76 and posted a WHIP of 1.129.
Gorzelanny last started a game on July 23 of last year. He's 35-42 in his career as a starter.