RHP Chris Bassitt (4-2, 3.66 ERA) takes the hill for the Mets and LHP Tyler Anderson (6-0, 2.90 ERA) goes for the Dodgers. Bassitt has been in the big leagues since 2014; he had Tommy John surgery in 2016 and missed all of the 2017 season as a result. He’s got a lifetime record of 35-27 with a 3.48 ERA in 116 games. Anderson has been a godsend to the Dodgers, whose rotation has been hit with the loss of Clayton Kershaw and Andrew Heaney and the continued absence of Dustin May. He and Tony Gonsolin are a combined 12-0 so far this season, which not even the most cock-eyed optimist would have suggested in March.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1969 Tom Seaver strikes out 14 batters in eight innings en route to the Mets’ 5-2 win over LA at Shea Stadium. The victory, fueled by Ed Kranepool’s two home runs, improves the second-place team’s record to 24-23, the latest they have been above .500 in franchise history.
1989 In a 22-inning game played at the Astrodome, Houston beats the Dodgers, 5-4, when Rafael Ramirez’ run-scoring single plates Bill Doran to end the contest at 2:50 a.m., seven hours and 14-minutes after it started. The longest game in National League history features L.A. center fielder John Shelby going 0-for-10 and southpaw Fernando Valenzuela finishing the game at first base.
The Athletic’s Jayson Stark notices the Pirates – Dodgers series just past:
On that note, we present the Strange But True case of the Pirates versus the Dodgers.
Pirates vs. Dodgers this season: 5-1
Pirates vs. everyone else: 17-26
Pirates vs. all other teams .500 or better: 3-15
Pirates vs. Dodgers (2017-21): 2-23*
Pirates series won vs. Dodgers in 2022: 2-for-2
Pirates series won vs. all other teams .500 or better in 2022: 0-for-6
(* h/t Jim Passon)
You just can’t explain some things in life. But especially …
LHP Clayton Kershaw (0-1, 7.94 ERA) tries to right his ship after an outing in which he gave up six runs (five earned) on 10 hits in 5 2/3 innings. He’ll face RHP Chris Bassitt (0-1, 5.06 ERA), who lost his first start of the year while giving up three runs on four hits in 5 1/3 innings.
On this day in Dodgers’ history:
2001 In the home opener at Veterans Stadium, Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Bunning’s number 14 jersey is retired. Kentucky’s Republican U.S. senator, who compiled a 224-184 record in his 17-year career pitching for the Tigers, Phillies, Pirates, and Dodgers, joins Richie Ashburn (1), Robin Roberts (36), Steve Carlton (32), and Mike Schmidt (20) as the fifth player to have his number retired by the Phillies.
2004 Adrian Beltre becomes the 36th player in baseball history to hit 100 home runs before the age of 25. The Dodger third baseman joins Cal Ripken Jr. and Lou Gehrig to have exactly 100 homers on their 25th birthday.
2016 The Padres, with their 7-0 loss at Petco Park, become the first team to be shut out in the first three games of the regular season, surpassing the dubious mark set by the Browns, who opened the 1943 campaign with 26 straight scoreless innings. San Diego also dropped their first two decisions of the three-game series against the Dodgers, 15-0 and 3-0.
The Astros send RHP Lance McCullers to the mound. His last start in a postseason game was in Game Seven of the 2017 World Series against the Dodgers. He lasted 2 1/3 innings, but he didn’t give up any runs. This season he finished strongly; in September he was 0-1 but allowed just three earned runs and had an ERA of 1.53. He’ll face RHP Chris Bassitt, who beat the White Sox in the Athletics’ Wild Card Series and went seven one-run innings while doing it. He also finished strongly; he was 3-0 with a 0.34 ERA in September.
The Yankees hand the ball to RHP Gerrit Cole, who went seven innings against the Indians in Game One of the Yankees’ Wild Card Series, striking out 13, walking none, giving up 6 hits and 2 runs. He’ll face LHP Blake Snell, who pitched five innings of no-hit ball against the Blue Jays in Game One of the Rays’ Wild Card Series.
Until the expansion of the playoffs, the World Series was well underway by October 5, and baseball’s history reflects that.
The Blue Jays give the ball to old friend Hyun-Jin Ryu, whose first year with the Jays has been very successful. He was 5-2 with a 2.69 ERA in twelve starts, and in his last one he threw seven shutout innings against the Yankees. He’ll face the Rays’ RHP Tyler Glasnow. The Rays lead the series 1-0.