Oct 06

NLDS Games One

First Game:Cubs at Nationals, 4:30 PM PT, TV: TBS

The Cubs’ RHP Kyle Hendricks (7-5, 3.03 ERA) faces off against RHP Stephen Strasburg (15-4, 2.52 ERA) of the Nationals. Hendricks started Games Three and Seven of last year’s World Series. In the final game he went 4 2/3 innings, gave up four hits and two runs and left without the decision. Strasburg didn’t pitch last postseason and famously sat out the 2012 playoffs as well. He made his only playoff start in 2014.

Second Game: Diamondbacks at Dodgers, 7:30 PM PT, TV: TBS

The Diamondbacks used both of their aces in the Wild Card Game, so they’ll ask RHP Taijuan Walker (9-9, 3.49 ERA) to get them of on the right foot against the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (18-4, 2.31). Walker was 2-0 with a 3.24 ERA against the Dodgers this season in three starts. Kershaw was 2-0 with a 0.59 ERA against the D-Backs this year. This will be Kershaw’s 18th playoff appearance; it will be Walker’s first.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1941 In Game 5 of the Fall Classic, Tiny Bonham goes the distance, limiting the Dodgers to just four hits to give the Yankees their 12th World Championship in franchise history. In one inning during the Bronx Bombers’ 3-1 victory at Ebbets Field, the New York fireballing right-hander will need just three pitches to retire the side.
  • 1949 In Game 2 of the World Series, only one run is scored again, but Preacher Roe and the Dodgers win this contest at Yankee Stadium, 1-0. Gil Hodges’ second inning single drives in Jackie Robinson to even up the Fall Classic at a game apiece.
  • 1959 The largest crowd ever to attend a major league game, 92,706 fans, watches a nail biter as White Sox hurler Bob Shaw beats Sandy Koufax and the Dodgers, 1-0, in Game 5 of the Fall Classic.
  • 1963 The Dodgers complete a four-game World Series sweep of the Yankees as Sandy Koufax wins his second game, 2-1. Frank Howard leads the offense with a home run and a single, the only two hits Whitey Ford gives up, and New York’s first baseman Joe Pepitone’s error (loses a thrown ball in the white-shirted crowd) leads to the decisive run in the seventh inning.
  • 1965“Hey, skip, bet you wish I was Jewish today, too.” – Don Drysdale, commenting after the game about his poor performance on the mound with manager Walt Alston. Sandy Koufax declines to pitch the first game of the World Series against the Twins because the game is scheduled on Yom Kippur, the most sacred of the Jewish holidays. As the Dodger southpaw attends shul and fasts on the Day of Atonement, Don Drysdale gives up seven runs in three innings in the team’s 8-2 loss at Minnesota’s Metropolitan Stadium.
  • 1966 Jim Palmer becomes the youngest player to pitch a shutout in the World Series when the 20 year-old Oriole right-hander blanks Sandy Koufax and the Dodgers, 6-0. The contest will become more memorable next month when Koufax surprises the baseball world by announcing his retirement, making this game his last major league appearance.
  • 1966 In the same Game Two loss to the Orioles at Dodger Stadium, Willie Davis establishes a World Series record by committing three errors in one game. The center fielder’s blunders come on two consecutive plays in the fifth inning, the first by losing a fly ball in the sun, then by dropping the next fly ball, followed by overthrowing third base.
  • 1980 In the 163rd game of the season, 35 year-old knuckleballer Joe Niekro earns his 20th victory, going the distance to defeat the Dodgers, 7-1, in the winner-take-all contest for the NL West. With the win, the Astros hold on to capture their first title in the 19-year history of the franchise after losing a season-ending three game series to LA, (3-2, 2-1, and 4-3) that forced the one-game playoff.

Lineup when available.

Sep 06

Game 139, 2017

Diamondbacks at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-A

Believe it or not, the Dodgers could clinch a postseason spot as early as tonight. The scenario has permutations galore and most of them have to do with the Brewers and Cubs. Put simply, if the Dodgers win tonight’s game and the Cubs and Brewers both lose, the Dodgers are guaranteed a spot because neither of those teams can match the Dodgers’ record of 93 wins.

The streaks end tonight. So saith I, Master of all I survey. In order to make it so, the Dodgers will send their parfait genteel Japanese knight Kenta Maeda, he of the 12-6 W-L record and the 4.19 ERA, to the mound to do battle with the D-Backs’ Taijuan Walker, who brings an 8-7 record with a 3.42 ERA to the game. Oddly, Maeda has 122 strikeouts for the season and Walker has 120. Advantage, Dodgers!

The D-Backs hammered Maeda last week in Phoenix, scoring seven runs on eight hits and knocking him out after three innings. Walker shut out the Rockies for five innings in his last start.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1924 In a game that features a total of only six hits, the Brooklyn Robins beat Boston, 1-0, behind the strong two-hit performance of right-hander Bill Doak. The Braves Field victory is the team’s 15th consecutive win, establishing the longest winning streak in franchise history.
  • 1953 With Giants manager Leo Durocher yelling “stick it in his ear”, Ruben Gomez hits Carl Furillo, the National League’s leading hitter, on the wrist with a pitch. After taking first base, the Dodgers right fielder bolts into the opposing dugout to choke ‘Leo the Lip’, but in the melee, the knuckle on his little finger is fractured, putting an end to his season.
  • 1981 Fernando Valenzuela ties the National League’s rookie record for shutouts, blanking St. Louis, 5-0, for his seventh whitewash of the season. The Dodger lefty shares the mark with Irv Young (1905 Beaneaters), Grover Alexander (1911 Phillies), and Jerry Koosman (1968 Mets).
  • 1985 In a matchup of aces that lives up its advanced billing, Dwight Gooden and Fernando Valenzuela hook up in one of the best pitchers’ duel in recent memory. New York beats Los Angeles at Chavez Ravine, 2-0, thanks to Darryl Strawberry’s two-run double on a day that the 20 year-old Mets right-hander strikes out 10 batters, throwing nine shutout innings, while the Dodgers southpaw pitches 11 innings without allowing a run.
  • 1996 Brett Butler returns to the Dodger lineup four months after having surgery for throat cancer. The 39 year-old center fielder scores the decisive run in the team’s 3-2 victory over the Bucs.

Also on this date in big league history, in 1995 Cal Ripken breaks Lou Gehrig’s consecutive game record, playing in his 2,131st straight game. When the game becomes official in the middle of the fifth inning, the new ‘Iron Man’ takes a victory lap around Camden Yards during the 22-minute standing ovation from the sellout crowd, including President Bill Clinton.

Lineup when available.

Apr 21

Game 17, 2017

Dodgers at Diamondbacks, 6:40PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-A

There’s another lefty on the hill in this game, but for a change it’s the Dodgers’ pitcher. Alex Wood (1-0, 1.00 ERA, 8K) takes the injured Rich Hill’s spot tonight against the D-Backs’ righty Taijuan Walker (2-1, 3.94, 16K). Wood has made one previous start this season. He went 3 2/3 innings against the Cubs on April 10, walked five, struck out four and gave up only one earned run. He’s pitched an additional 5 1/3 innings of relief this year. Walker allowed one run in five innings with seven strikeouts against the Dodgers on April 16 and got the win.

Lineup when available.

Apr 16

Game 13, 2017

Diamondbacks at Dodgers, 1:10PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-A

RHP Taijuan Walker (1-1, 4.91 ERA) takes the mound for the D-Backs and LHP Rich Hill (1-0, 1.80 ERA) comes off the 10-day disabled list to pitch for the Dodgers. Walker lost his grip on his last start against the Giants when he threw away (video) a comebacker with the bases loaded in the 4th:

With the bases loaded and one out, Moore tapped a dribbler that Walker fielded halfway up the first-base line. He threw wildly past home, enabling Brandon Crawford to score. Catcher Jeff Mathis scooped up the ball but misfired past Walker, who was covering home. Joe Panik scored on that play. First baseman Paul Goldschmidt caught up with the ball and threw home, but Jarrett Parker slid under Walker’s tag.

Hill missed his last start with a blister on his pitching hand. His curve is devastating to hitters but it hurts him as well, apparently. In his first and only start so far he was very effective, giving up only two hits and one run over five innings to the Padres on April 5.

The Dodgers will have to option someone to make room for Hill on the roster. Trayce Thompson goes down. Forsythe’s hammy leaves him available for pinch-hitting duty today. He’s expected to be back in the lineup tomorrow.

Lineup when available.

Apr 15

Game Nine, 2015

Mariners at Dodgers, 7:10PM PT, TV: SPNLA, ESPN2

On Jackie Robinson Day, the Mariners start Taijuan Walker, who last week had a first start of the season he’d rather forget: he gave up 9 hits and 9 runs in 3 1/3 innings in a 12-0 loss to the A’s on Friday. He’s 3-4 with a 4.15 ERA in 12 appearances (nine starts) over the past three years for the Ms.

The Dodgers counter with Brett Anderson, who gave up five hits and three runs but got no decision in a game the Dodgers lost to the Diamondbacks 4-3. Lifetime against Seattle Anderson is 7-4 with a 1.81 ERA in 15 games, all but one a start.

Lineup:


I’m not sure who that Van Skyle guy is playing left field. Puig is out, presumably to rest his hamstring again. Tomorrow’s an off-day, so he’ll have had three days to let it recover before the Rockies arrive.

In other personnel news, the Dodgers claimed left-handed pitcher Ryan Dennick from the Reds and designated left-handed pitcher David Huff for assignment.