Giants @ Dodgers July 28, 2017: A contrary tale of rival baseball teams

Kyle Farmer gets the call to the majors. (Photo: Stacie Wheeler)

The Dodgers (71-31) will play the Giants (40-63) for the first time in two and a half months when they open a three-game series against their rivals on Friday night at Dodger Stadium. Interestingly, the Dodgers have yet to win a series against San Francisco this season, splitting a four-game set at AT&T Park and losing two series in May. After their last meeting, the Dodgers were (23-18) and third place in the NL West. A lot has changed since.

Giants
Dodgers
7:10 PM PT
Los Angeles
CF
Span
LF
Taylor
2B
Panik
SS
Seager
RF
Pence
3B
Turner
1B
Posey
1B
Bellinger
SS
Crawford
2B
Forsythe
3B
Hwang
C
Barnes
C
Hundley RF Hernandez
LF
Hernandez
CF
Pederson
P
Moore (L)
P
Wood (L)

With the hot stove simmering in the background, the Dodgers look to pick up their sixth straight win. The last-place Giants come into the series having won two games in a row against the Pirates, but their season has been an epic failure for the most part. While the Dodgers are on pace to win 110+ games, shattering franchise records on their way, the Giants are on their way to having the worst season in their franchise’s history. The last time the Giants saw the Dodgers, Justin Turner was on the disabled list, Cody Bellinger wasn’t a household name yet and Chris Taylor hadn’t become a demigod.

We’ve talked a lot about how good this Dodgers team is, but let’s not gloss over the fact that the Giants are equally as bad. Just how bad you ask? For one, they are 31 1/2 games back of the Dodgers in the NL West, and they are dead last in the league in slugging percentage (.374), OPS (.679) and home runs (79). The Dodgers come into the series with a plus-181 run differential while the Giants are wallowing in dismay with a negative-112 run differential. The Giants’ pitching has also been abysmal. They have given up the most hits in baseball (1,010), and opposing hitters are batting .276 against them.

I don’t think anyone predicted that the Dodgers would be this good or the Giants this bad, but here we are.

In a battle of left-handers, Alex Wood (11-1, 2.17 ERA, 2.45 FIP) aims to start a new winning streak after picking up his first loss of the season last time out against the Braves. Wood’s been so good this year, and he was due a clunker at some point. He only lasted  4 2/3 innings and allowed seven runs on nine hits with four strikeouts and four walks on 100 pitches, skyrocketing his ERA from 1.56 to 2.17. 2.17.

Wood faced the Giants in back-to-back starts April 26 and May 2. The lefty only allowed one hit over six innings in his first face-off against ‘Frisco, but they roughed him up in the second match up at Dodger Stadium when he allowed five runs on seven hits in five innings. Nevertheless, the Dodgers and Wood still ended up defeating the Giants 13-5. Overall in his career, Wood is 1-2 with a 5.40 ERA in eight games (four starts) against the Giants. Buster Posey is hitting .417 vs. Wood with five hits in 12 at-bats.

Matt Moore (3-10, 5.82 ERA, 4.67 FIP) is looking for his first victory since June 20. He’s allowed 17 runs in 26 1/3 innings since. Like Wood, Moore also faced the Dodgers in consecutive starts back in late April and early May. The Dodgers won both games. In fact, Moore’s May 2 start against the Dodgers was one of his worst of the season. He allowed nine runs on six hits with five walks in 3 1/3 innings. Overall, Moore’s 3-3 with a 5.54 ERA in seven career starts against the Dodgers and 2-2 with a 6.86 ERA in four starts at Dodger Stadium.

——

Alongside swirling trade rumors and ping pong on Thursday, there was news that Kyle Farmer, Wood’s college roommate, was to be promoted to the big club. The 26-year old catcher hit .326/.384/.488 with nine home runs in 81 games between Double-A Tulsa and Triple-A Oklahoma City this year. With the addition of a third catcher, this allows more flexibility in the use of Austin Barnes. Barnes has been valuable as a pinch-hitter and second baseman as well as a backup catcher to Yasmani Grandal. Farmer can also play around the infield as well as catch, versatility prized by Dodgers’ management. Barnes will be behind the plate, batting sixth in Roberts’ lineup Friday night.

The corresponding move was Grant Dayton (neck) to the 10-day DL.

The Dodgers also made a trade, acquiring RHP Luke Farrell from the Royals.

Finally, a good sign for Clayton Kershaw and his recovery from a lower back strain.

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.