It came as little surprise Friday when Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker named left-hander Gio Gonzalez and ace Max Scherzer to pitch Games 2 and 3 of the National League Championship Series against the Chicago Cubs.
Scherzer, who has been sidelined due to a right hamstring tweak, threw a bullpen as Baker announced the assignments for Gonzalez and Scherzer.
Gonzalez, who was drafted by the Chicago White Sox, was 15-9 with a 2.96 ERA. Scherzer was 16-6 with a 2.51 ERA in 31 starts.
"I'm grateful and honored that Dusty has faith in me," Gonzalez said at a news conference.
Gonzalez will oppose Jon Lester in a battle of left-handers on Saturday, and Scherzer will face left-hander Jose Quintana on Monday.