Adam Wainwright is now a “Game 5 Guy”. In other words, a guy that can start Game 5, shut down the other team, and secure a series win.
Game 5 guys win championships. Wainwright’s epic performance last night didn’t even give the Pirates a chance to win. Adam Wainwright finally turned in a Game 5 Guy performance after failing to do so in Game 5 last year against the Nationals (Wainwright was, of course, bailed out by his teammates in a game I’m trying to forget).
Justin Verlander turned in a Game 5 Guy performance against the A’s in last year’s ALDS, and his team went on to win the Pennant. He has a chance to put up another Game 5 Guy performance tonight against the same team.
Game 5 Guys are important for a team trying to navigate their way through the Division Series. Five game series are a crapshoot. Having a reliable Game 5 Guy ensures you have a solid shot to win 2 out of the 5 games, 40 percent.
Who is the Nationals’ Game 5 Guy? Gio failed last year. Jordan Zimmerman bombed in his one postseason start. Strasburg, of course, never got the chance.
The Nationals have a solid rotation, but it’s possible none of their “aces” are Game 5 Guy material.
Do I dare mention the name David Price?