Sunday Night Baseball in Queens features Clayton Kershaw (7-1, 1.48 ERA) starting for the Dodgers and Bartolo Colon (4-3, 3.44 ERA) starting for the Mets. Kershaw has already thrown three shutouts this month, so it’s not impossible he could get another.
Kershaw is 7-0 with a 1.17 ERA and has held Mets’ hitters to a .185 average over 10 career starts. Colon has had rather less success against the Dodgers: 2-6 with a 5.54 ERA. Of course, the rosters don’t remain static: if you were 3-0 against a team five years ago the odds are good that very few of the guys you beat then remain on the team this season. On the other hand, in Colon’s long career Utley (10 hits in 20 ABs, three for extra bases) and Gonzalez (12 for 27 with two home runs) have hurt him.
Clayton Kershaw (6-1, 1.67 ERA) pitches for the Dodgers and Brandon Finnegan (1-2, 4.44 ERA) goes for the Reds.
The Reds can be excused if they feel overmatched: in his last six starts Kershaw’s had at least 10 strikeouts and one walk or fewer. The left-handed Finnegan has struggled in his last three starts, not getting past the sixth inning in any of them while posting a 5.52 ERA over 14 2/3 innings.
Chase Utley's 13 assists Sunday tied L.A. Dodgers record for any position (Davey Lopes 4/12/80, Willie Randolph 8/23/89) — via @DodgersPR.
Clayton Kershaw (5-1, 1.74 ERA) makes the 251st start of his career (he also has two relief appearances; I didn’t remember that) on a roll. He’s struck out more than ten batters and walked no more than one in each of his last five games. His K/BB ratio is a ridiculous 19.25 for the season. He’ll face Jered Weaver (3-2, 6.10 ERA), whose last start climbed the heights and sank to the depths in just four innings. He got the first 11 hitters in order and then put 9 of the next 10 on base, giving up 8 runs on 9 hits and losing the game.
Utley 2B Turner 3B Seager SS Kendrick 1B Pederson CF Thompson LF Puig RF Ellis C Kershaw P
Save us, Clayton! That’s what the Dodgers are saying to their superhero Mr. Kershaw, (4-1, 2.04 ERA) as they ask him to salvage a split in the series with the Mets. He’ll face Bartolo Colon, whose 3-1, 2.82 ERA record was overshadowed this week by the first home run of his career the other night.
Things to think about:
David Wright, Curtis Granderson, and Lucas Duda lead the current Mets in plate appearances against Kershaw. In 124 combined plate appearances, they’re hitting .142/.224/.150 against him. Wright holds the sole extra-base hit of the group, a double.
Utley 2B Seager SS Turner 3B Gonzalez 1B Grandal C Pederson CF Puig RF Hernandez LF Kershaw P
Kershaw (3-1, 1.96 ERA) goes against R.A. Dickey (1-3, 5.73 ERA). This will be the Dodgers’ lefty’s first outing against the Blue Jays in his 9-year career. He still has the Orioles, Red Sox and Twins to go (barring expansion). Dickey was the guy who won the Cy Young Award the one time Clayton didn’t between 2011-2014. He’s not had a good start to this season, but the Jays are hopeful he’s turned it around.
Updated lineup: Utley 2B Seager SS Turner 3B Gonzalez 1B Puig RF Kendrick LF Pederson CF Crawford DH Ellis C
Lefthander Drew Pomeranz (2-2, 2.86 ERA) v. lefthander Clayton Kershaw (2-1, 2.43 ERA). Both pitchers are strikeout artists: Kershaw’s strikeout-per-nine-innings ratio is 9.73, while Pomeranz’s is 12.68. The Padre pitcher has only made it into the sixth inning in two of his four starts this year, while Kershaw’s been his usual self, getting into or past the seventh inning in all five of his starts.
Lineup when available.
Puig RF Hernandez LF Gonzalez 1B Turner 3B Kendrick 2B Thompson CF Seager SS Ellis C Kershaw P
A vote of confidence for a slumping Puig? Maybe, but the way he’s hitting this looks like a black hole to lead off the game. As thousands have said before, though, you only lead off once in the entire game.
Clayton Kershaw (2-0, 1.50 ERA) is matched against Tom Koehler (1-2, 4.80 ERA). Koehler’s pitched 15 innings this season, walking seven and striking out 12. Kershaw’s gone 30 innings, walking three and striking out 30.
Lineup when available.
Utley 2B Seager SS Turner 3B Gonzalez 1B Puig RF Grandal C Crawford LF Pederson CF Kershaw P
Clayton Kershaw (2-0, 1.64 ERA) and the Dodgers make their last appearance at Turner Field versus right-hander Matt Wisler (0-1, 4.61 ERA). Kershaw hasn’t pitched much against the Braves in his career; he’s 2-0 in six career starts against them with a 1.79 ERA. He and the Dodgers would to exit with a win, both to take this series 2-1 and to improve the franchise record at Turner, where they’re 30-41 going into this morning’s game.
The game starts at 6:10AM my time, so someone else please find the lineup and post it in the comments. I ain’t getting up at 5:30 just to do it.
Giants at Dodgers, 7:10PM PT, TV: SPNLA, NBC Bay Area, MLBN Free Game (out of area only)
Kersh v. MadBum for the ninth time. The Dodgers’ lefty is 1-0 with a 1.20 ERA this season, and Bumgarner is 1-0 with a 3.27 ERA. ‘Nuff said.
Giants catcher Buster Posey has stepped into the batter’s box against Kershaw more times than any player in the Major Leagues, but he has struggled with a .228/.256/.329 line in 75 plate appearances. That’s his worst OPS against any pitcher with a minimum of 25 plate appearances.
The Dodgers’ Adrian Gonzalez has fared even worse against Bumgarner. The first baseman’s .151/.191/.200 in 47 plate appearances adds up to his worst OPS against any of the 49 pitchers he’s faced 25 times or more in his career.
It’s Jackie Robinson Day around the majors, so every player will be wearing uniform number 42. Jackie’s wife Rachel and daughter Sharon will be at Dodger Stadium for the game, and I hope you saw the Ken Burns documentary about Jackie earlier this week on PBS. As far as I’m concerned, Rachel was the star. There’s one oddity about this celebration, though; there are fewer African-American players in baseball now than there were 10 or 15 years ago, and this season there are only fourteen black pitchers in all of baseball. Where are the Bob Gibsons and Dave Stewarts and Vida Blues and Doc Goodens and Fergie Jenkins and Mudcat Grants? Gone to the NBA?
Hernandez LF Puig RF Gonzalez 1B Turner 3B Kendrick 2B Thompson CF Ellis C Culberson SS Kershaw P
Even this early in the season it’s becoming very apparent that Dave Roberts is not averse to platooning or playing the matchup game. There are very few if any lefties in his lineup against the left-handed Bumgarner.
The two aces go at one another for the first time this year: Kershaw (1-0, 0.00 ERA) against Bumgarner (1-0, 5.40 ERA). Kershaw is 9-3 with a 1.16 ERA in 14 starts at the Giants’ home park, while Bumgarner is 13-7 overall against the Dodgers with a 2.45 ERA in 22 appearances.
The Dodgers got 9 hits in Friday night’s game but only converted them into two runs. Had they gotten more young Stripling might have gotten a win for his efforts rather than a no-decision. They are still hitting well: Puig, Utley, Gonzalez, Seager, Ellis and Turner all singled and Pederson got a double. For the second night in a row the bullpen gave up the go-ahead or winning runs.
Lineup when available.
Hernandez 2B Puig RF Turner 3B Gonzalez 1B Van Slyke LF Thompson CF Ellis C Culberson SS Kershaw P