Giants @ Dodgers April 6, 2014: Don’t Get Swept, Please

dodger_stadium_openingday2013Yasiel Puig is out of the lineup for the second time in three days. I assume he’s serving five-to-eight years in a federal penitentiary and that we’ll see him sometime next decade.

Or, maybe, he’s still nursing a swollen left thumb suffered after a foolish Punto-esque headfirst slide into first base yesterday. Puig’s X-rays came back clean, but he left the clubhouse this afternoon to get an MRI done. At the moment, we don’t yet know whether he’ll be available later in the game tonight, though there’s no indication that this will be anything serious — and the Dodgers do have a day off tomorrow.

Giants
Dodgers 
8:05pm PT
Los Angeles, CA
CF
Pagan
2B
Gordon
1B
Belt
LF
Crawford
3B
Sandoval
SS
Ramirez
C
Posey
1B
Gonzalez
RF
Pence
RF
Ethier
LF
Morse
CF
Kemp
SS
Crawford
3B
Uribe
2B
Adrianza
C
Butera
P
Cain (R)
P
Greinke (R)

And so we avoid “too many outfielders” for yet another day, with Carl Crawford, Matt Kemp, and Andre Ethier making up the starting outfield. Wondering why Ethier is above Kemp in the lineup? I’m guessing that Don Mattingly saw Ethier’s career line of .441/.467/.574 in 75 plate appearances against Matt Cain against Matt Kemp’s .222/.276/.444 in 58 plate appearances. While pitcher-vs-hitter stats are overrated, there’s so little difference between fifth and sixth that it’s hard to argue. On the other hand, there’s now four lefties in the first five hitters. Look for that to make for some interesting late game matchup issues.)

Drew Butera gets his first start, and while he is indeed one of the worst hitters in the game, I suppose A.J. Ellis can’t play every single night. Without Puig, Dee Gordon hits leadoff.

We’re also still waiting to hear what’s going on with Chad Billingsley, who made it through his first inning of a rehab stint with Rancho just fine, then left abruptly in the second after attempting to avoid a ball back up the middle from catcher Ben Turner. We don’t yet know exactly what the issue is, but let me say that I absolutely love this quote:

“It wasn’t planned, just something didn’t feel right, so instead of pitching through it and maybe hurting something,” Billingsley said.

FINALLY. Thank you. And, in other pitcher injury news, Josh Beckett was able to throw a bullpen session today, leaving him as a possibility to start on Wednesday against the Tigers.

Remember, thanks to women’s college basketball on ESPN tonight, this game will air on ESPN2. I think it’d be nice if this team could go into a day off without having been swept, don’t you think?

About Mike Petriello

Mike Petriello

Mike writes about lots of baseball in lots of places, and right now that place is MLB.com.