Phillies @ Dodgers April 30, 2017: Ryu for the sweep

(Via)

Are you still on a high from last night’s thriller? Because it’s hard to imagine anything topping that … at least, (likely) not until the final month of the season. But now, there’s more baseball to be played, and the Dodgers have a shot at their first sweep of the season.

Phillies
Dodgers
1:10 p.m.
Los Angeles
2B
Hernández
CF
Toles
SS
Galvis
LF
Bellinger
LF
Nava
3B
Turner
3B
Franco
1B
González
CF
Altherr
RF
Puig
RF
Saunders
C
Grandal
1B
Joseph 2B Taylor
C
Rupp
SS
Hernández
P
Pivetta (R)
P
Ryu (L)

Hyun-Jin Ryu (4.64 ERA, 5.77 FIP, 1.359 WHIP) has had a rough go of things to start the season. He took a tough loss his last time out, allowing just one run to the Giants in six innings pitched. The Dodgers were unable to back up his efforts, and ended up losing 2-1, but the most important thing is that Ryu looked the best he has all season. Dustin wrote the following day about what made Ryu more effective in that start, focusing especially on the increased usage of the changeup against lefties.

The Phillies are sending out a rookie to try to stop the suddenly streaking Dodgers. Nick Pivetta, a 24-year-old right hander, was a fourth-round draft pick of the Washington Nationals in 2013, and was traded to the Phillies in 2015 for Jonathan Papelbon. He has made three starts this season at Triple-A Lehigh Valley, with very good results: 19 IP, 0.95 ERA, 24 K, 2 BB, 12 H. From FanGraphs:

Pivetta has an above-average fastball and at least one decent breaking pitch, but lacks a useful changeup and precise command. The most likely outcome? A career as an up-and-down starter. Pivetta’s performance early this season, however, suggests that he’s experienced some improvement. He’s recorded strikeout and walk rates of 33.3% and 2.8%, respectively, giving him the top strikeout- and walk-rate differential (30.6 points) among qualifiers at Triple-A. It also seems like both the velocity and command might have taken steps for him. The good people of Baseball Prospectus observed Pivetta bumping 97 mph at points during a start against Pawtucket.

We’ll see what kind of welcome the Dodgers give the rookie.

Corey Seager, who was 2-for-4 on his bobblehead night yesterday, gets the day off, and Enrique Hernández starts at shortstop instead. Cody Bellinger, who hit his first and second career home runs last night, is batting second, his fifth different batting order position in six games started.

—–

As reported yesterday, Logan Forsythe and Joc Pederson will likely rehab with Rancho later this week:

The possibility of them being activated on Friday is new, though. Don’t expect #CodyLove to stick around when that happens:

Oh, and, uh, this on Scott Kazmir, because you were all dying to know:

About Sarah Wexler

Sarah Wexler
Sarah Wexler is a native Angeleno and longtime Dodger fan. She began blogging about baseball in 2012 on her Tumblr, New Grass On The Field, where she covered an array of topics but especially enjoyed exploring baseball history. She is now a reporter/producer for MLB.com. She earned her master's degree in Sports Management from Cal State Long Beach. She graduated from New York University in 2014 with a bachelor's in History and a minor in American Studies. She's an avid Springsteen fan, which is a big boost to her baseball writer cred.