Dodgers @ Marlins July 14, 2017: McCarthy vs. Straily to start second half

(Via)

We now return to our regularly scheduled Dodgers programming and kick off the second half to the 2017 season in Miami. The All-Star festivities have concluded, and the attention returns to the task at hand (returning to the World Series). The Dodgers look to extend their lead in the NL West and their winning streak to seven on Friday when they open a three-game series against the Marlins.

Dodgers
Marlins
4:10 PM PST
Miami
LF
Taylor
2B
Gordon
SS
 Seager
RF
Stanton
3B
Turner
CF
Yelich
1B
Bellinger
LF
Ozuna
2B
Forsythe
1B
Bour
CF
Pederson
3B
Prado
C
Grandal C Realmuto
RF
Puig
SS
Riddle
P
McCarthy (R)
P
Straily (R)

Besides Kenley Jansen‘s three-strikeout ninth inning, the Dodgers’ six All-Star representatives had lackluster outings in the Midsummer Classic. Clayton Kershaw watched from the dugout, and this time around it seemed more to be about Kersh spending some well-deserved time with his family. Cody Bellinger beat out Charlie Blackmon in the first round of the Home Run Derby, but was knocked out by the behemoth that is Aaron Judge in Round 2. Bellinger also went 0-for-3 in the game Tuesday. Corey Seager went 0-for-2 and Justin Turner 0-for-1 in the 2-1 loss to the American League. Alex Wood encountered some bad luck in the fifth inning when Miguel Sano‘s pop fly fell in, allowing Jonathan Schoop to score the first run of the game for the AL.

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Along with the exhibition baseball this week, the team took advantage of the brief break in action to relax, celebrate and most importantly gear up for the second half. Here’s a short rundown of the happenings.

The All-Star break featured another Dodgers marriage proposal.

There was a Bellinger birthday.

Happy Birthday @cody_bellinger #Belly’s

A post shared by Justin Turner (@redturn2) on

Joc Pederson enjoyed some R&R on a tropical island.

Who would you take to a deserted island?

A post shared by Joc Pederson (@yungjoc650) on

Kenta Maeda took his family to Disney World.

Finally, we got to see Vin Scully. I miss him terribly.

Now that the break is over, the team with the best record in baseball (61-29) looks to take on the second half with as much pitching dominance and as many home-run bat tosses and improbable come-from-behind wins as they accomplished in the first half. A lot can happen in these next 72 games, but right now the Dodgers are well on their way to their fifth consecutive NL West division title.

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The last time the Dodgers and Marlins met at Dodger Stadium on May 19, the benches cleared for a brief brouhaha that saw Don Mattingly, Ross Stripling and Bob Geren all ejected in the ninth inning. AJ Ramos hit Brett Eibner in the ribs, and Stripling retaliated by throwing a pitch behind Giancarlo Stanton. The Dodgers ended up winning three of four against the Marlins in the L.A. series.

Things are going swimmingly well for the Dodgers as they embark on the second half to the season, but I’m terrified of injuries down the stretch. Brandon McCarthy (6-3, 3.12 ERA, 3.25 FIP) suffered a dislocated shoulder earlier this season, and he’s been battling knee tendinitis.

McCarthy picked up a victory against the Marlins in May, going six innings and allowing one run on three hits with five strikeouts and a walk. Overall, he is 2-0 with a 0.60 ERA in two career starts against Miami, one a three-hit complete game shutout in 2013 when he was with the D-backs.

Dan Straily (7-4, 3.31 ERA, 3.99 FIP) toes the rubber for the Fish in the series opener. Last season, Straily allowed the most home runs in the NL (31). This season he’s allowed 14 homers, four less than Kershaw. Even though he’s still susceptible to the long ball, he’s become an integral part of the Marlins’ starting rotation this season. He’s been better at home (2.31 ERA, four home runs allowed, 2.88 K/BB) than on the road (4.27 ERA, 10 home runs, 4.00 K/BB).

Last time out against the Giants, Straily allowed one run on four hits with three strikeouts and no walks in a career-high 8 1/3 innings for the win. He is 1-1 with a 7.20 ERA in four games (two starts) against the Dodgers in his career. Yasmani Grandal, Yasiel Puig and Enrique Hernandez have all hit home runs against the right-hander.

The Dodgers have won 26 of their last 30 games and are pulling away from division rivals Arizona and Colorado. It’s been a blast so far. Here’s to another exciting half season of Dodger baseball.

About Stacie Wheeler

Stacie Wheeler
Stacie Wheeler, born and raised in So Cal, has been writing about the Dodgers since 2010. She wrote daily as the Co-Editor of Lasorda's Lair for five long years, and she has also written for Dodgers Nation and Dodger Blue 1958. She currently contributes to The Hardball Times. Stacie graduated from the University Of Southern California with a bachelor's degree in Cinema-Television. You can also watch her videos on her YouTube channel, DishingUpTheDodgers.