Kenta Maeda makes his first trip to PNC Park. He carries a 6-4, 2.64 ERA record with him and for now appears to be the #2 guy in the Dodgers’ rotation, at least in terms of reliability. He’ll face the Pirates’ Jeff Locke, who’s 6-5 with a 5.44 ERA. His latest outing was a 6 2/3 inning one in which he outdueled Madison Bumgarner with help from the bullpen and won 1-0.
Dodgers left-handed reliever and native Pennsylvanian Adam Liberatore is having an off-the-radar phenomenal season. In 24 innings over 32 games, he has a 0.75 ERA, second lowest among National League qualifiers, and he didn’t even open the season in the big leagues.
To start this game the Dodgers brought up Nick Tepesch from OKlahoma City, where he’d achieved a 2.00 ERA in 18 innings. They acquired him as a free agent June 6 after he was released by the Texas Rangers, where’d he spent five years, mostly in their minor league system. He has a 9-17 record and a 4.56 ERA in the big leagues, all with the Rangers. His opponent will be Jameson Taillon, who’s 1-1 with a 3.50 ERA in his previous three big league starts.
The hype has already begun for this game, and it’s only natural. Washington’s Stephen Strasburg hasn’t lost a game yet this year while winning ten; Los Angeles’s Clayton Kershaw has lost one game while also winning ten. In ERA Kershaw has the edge, giving up a measly 1.58 earned runs per nine innings; Strasburg has given up 2.90 earned runs per nine innings.
The Dodgers may activate Yasiel Puig today. If they do they’ll have to send someone down to OKC. Update: Nope, tomorrow, says Roberts.
In other news:
Today, the #Dodgers acquired infielder Chris Taylor from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for RHP Zach Lee.
The Dodgers’ Kenta Maeda (5-4, 2.70 ERA) goes against the D-Backs’ Archie Bradley (2-2, 5.22 ERA) in a battle of righthanders. Maeda has won two of his last three starts and made two quality starts in a row. Bradley has lost two straight but has a 3.79 ERA since his callup from Reno May 29.
Goldschmidt continues to be a terror against the Dodgers: he’s now hit 23 home runs against them in his career. That’s bad enough, but he’s only 28 and in just his sixth year in the big leagues. He may hit a lot more against them before he’s through.
In personnel news:
Today, #Dodgers announced the signing of OF Will Venable to a 1-year contract and optioned C/IF Austin Barnes to Triple-A Oklahoma City.
The last time the Dodgers saw Jake Arrieta it was a Sunday Night Baseball game on ESPN in which Jessica Mendoza made her second ESPN appearance and he threw a no-hitter against them. That was last August 30. Since then he’s thrown another no-hitter, hasn’t lost a game yet this season, and is currently 9-0 with a 1.72 ERA. Scott Kazmir (4-3, 4.84 ERA) has been improving (he’s 3-1 in May with a 4.13 ERA) since a poor start, but he’s got his work cut out for him. He’ll need to hold the Cubbies at bay and hope the Dodgers can get a couple of runs off Arrieta.
Oh, the Cubs have won all of the last 23 starts Arrieta has made. That ties a Major League record.
Lineup when available.
New Dodger lineup: Utley 2B Seager SS Gonzalez 1B Pederson CF Thompson RF Kendrick 3B Grandal C Crawford LF Kazmir P
Personnel news: Julio Urias will be brought back up to replace Alex Wood, who’s been placed on the 15-day DL with elbow soreness. Yasiel Puig has been scratched from today’s game with a sore left hamstring and Alex Guerrero has been designated for assignment.
It’s probably premature to suggest that, just as it was when Kershaw came up eight years ago. Nonetheless, Julio Urias will pitch for the Los Angeles Dodgers against the New York Mets in New York City on Friday, May 27, 2016. He’ll be the youngest pitcher to start for the Dodgers since one Fernando Valenzuela in September of 1980. Here are the five most recent starters to debut at a younger age:
Felix Hernandez, SEA, 8/4/2005
Todd Van Poppel, OAK, 9/11/1991
Wilson Alvarez, CHW, 7/24/89
Dwight Gooden, NYM, 4/7/84
Britt Burns, CWS, 8/5/75
Three of those guys had pretty good careers (Burns had a hip injury which shortened his, and Van Poppel couldn’t make his fastball move much).
I can imagine how excited the youngster and his family are. Kiké Hernandez is amused in a funny way, of course:
My phone keeps telling me that there's a teenager pitching for us tomorrow! #UriasMania
Urias has gone 4-1 with a 1.10 ERA over 41 innings for the AAA Oklahoma City Dodgers, striking out 44 while walking 8, a 5.5 K/BB ratio.
Making your first major league start in New York City is being thrown into the deep end of the pool, but the Dodgers must be confident in the youngster. I wonder why they didn’t bring Stripling back up to replace Alex Wood, whose triceps soreness is the cause of this shift in the first place.
This game pits last year’s regular season MVP Kershaw against last year’s World Series MVP Bumgarner. How about that? Apparently this is the first time in MLB history that’s ever happened.
This marks the fourth time in their careers that Bumgarner and Kershaw have faced off and the first since Sept. 13, 2013. The Giants are 2-1 in those contests, but Kershaw has better numbers (2.08 ERA and 23 strikeouts in 21 2/3 innings) compared to Bumgarner, who has a 3.32 ERA and 19 punchouts in 19 innings.
Not only that, but they hit against each other. Kershaw’s 3 for 5 against Bumgarner, while Bumgarner is only 1 for 7 with 4 Ks, but that’s partly because Kershaw bears down against him: “He’s country strong, as they say.”
Neither guy has started off his season as well as he pitched last year, but that can’t last.
In other news, the Dodgers optioned LHP Adam Liberatore to OKC and recalled OF Chris Heisey from there.
Lineup when available.
Tonight's #Dodgers lineup vs. the Giants:
Van Slyke LF
Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw has given up nine hits in 12 1/3 innings and a .320 batting average in two starts this season. Kershaw is 13-5 with a 3.17 ERA in 26 starts against the Rockies.
This would seem to be the place for a song:
The Rockies send Kyle Kendrick out to face Kershaw. Kendrick has had two wildly different outings this year. In the first he went seven innings, scattered seven hits, walked none, struck out six and gave up no runs to get the win. In his second start he went six innings, walked five, gave up eight hits and eight runs to take the loss.
In personnel news, the Dodgers optioned RHP Carlos Frias to Oklahoma City. They also claimed RHP Daniel Corcino from Cincinnati and designated LHP Ryan Dennick for assignment.
Lineup when available.
Tonight's #Dodgers lineup:
Update: Kemp is gone to the Padres for catcher Yasmani Grandal and a pair of pitching prospects. Fedex also goes to the Padres, along with about $30M to defray part of the cost of Kemp’s contract.
Wow! In very short order today the Dodgers
Got 36-year-old shortstop Jimmy Rollins from the Phillies to fill the gap left behind when Hanley Ramirez went the free agent route
Traded Dee Gordon and Dan Haren to the Marlins in exchange for pitcher Andrew Heaney, backup catcher Austin Barnes, minor leaguers Enrique Hernandez and Chris Hatcher
Flipped Heaney to the Angels for second-baseman Howie Kendrick
May be close to signing free-agent pitcher Brandon McCarthy
and have discussed adding pitcher Cole Hamels and second-baseman Chase Utley to the Jimmy Rollins deal with the Phillies
And there’s still tomorrow to find deals which send Ethier, Crawford or Kemp to somebody for a starting pitcher or prospects!
Now that they’ve gotten Kendrick, I can’t see why they’d want Utley except as more bait to trade off, as they did with Heaney (hey, kid, I’d have liked to see you pitch!). Do the Phillies need an outfielder?
Update: changed the post title to day 3, which is accurate. I lost a day somewhere.